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Romney-Obama swing districts

by: Left Coast Libertarian

Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 14:33:14 PM EST


We have Romney-Obama congressional district election numbers for almost every district in congress. I still need breakdowns for 16 counties, 9 of which are in New Jersey. So some of these are estimated. The estimates should be pretty good but there can be some variance.  
Left Coast Libertarian :: Romney-Obama swing districts
There were three districts that John McCain won that Barack Obama won 4 years later:

FL-26
FL-27
NY-11

Two of these are in Miami-Dade county, Florida, an area Obama really improved in, while the other is primarily in Staten Island, where the voting was disrupted by Sandy.

The list of districts Barack Obama won in 2008 and Romney won in 2012 is much longer.

CA-25
CA-49
FL-18
IL-6
IL-13
IL-14
IL-16
IN-2
MI-1
MI-3
MI-4
MI-6
MI-7
MI-8
MI-11
NE-2
NV-2
NY-23
OH-10
PA-6
PA-7
PA-8
PA-15
PA-16
TX-23
VA-10
WA-3
WI-1
WI-6
WI-7
WI-8

One of the reasons it's longer is because Romney did better than McCain. Obama won CA-25 in 2008 48.7%-48.1%, but lost it in 2012 47.8%-49.7%. The district, however, still had a PVI of R+3.

The list contains 4 districts in Illinois, 7 in Michigan, 5 in Pennsylvania, and 4 in Wisconsin. While Romney did noticeably improve on McCain in these states, the best of them, Illinois, was actually the state Romney improved 9th best. These states just consist of a bunch of swingy R+1-3 districts that Obama won narrowly in 2008 but lost in 2012.

Democrats have congressmen in 9 districts Mitt Romney won.

AZ-1
AZ-2
FL-18
GA-12
MN-7
NC-7
TX-23
UT-4
WV-3

Republicans have congressmen in 17 districts Barack Obama won.

CA-10
CA-21
CA-31
CO-6
FL-13
FL-27
IA-3
MN-2
MN-3
NV-3
NJ-2
NJ-3
NY-2
NY-11
NY-19
VA-2
WA-8

Before we conclude that this is a big advantage for Democrats, we have to remember that since Barack Obama won the election, he won several Republican leaning districts. If we adjust the lists and add in districts held by Democrats with a Republican PVI, that list goes from 9 districts to 15.

AZ-1
AZ-2
CA-36
FL-18
GA-12
IL-12
MN-1
MN-7
NC-7
NH-1
NY-1
OR-5
TX-23
UT-4
WV-3

On the other side, if we exclude districts that Obama won, but have a Republican PVI from the Republican list, we go from 17 to 10.

CA-21
CA-31
CO-6
FL-27
IA-3
NJ-2
NJ-3
NY-2
NY-11
NY-19

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Excellent post
Thanks for breaking it down for us. I'm surprised three districts that McCain won were won by Obama four years later. I think the Cuban vote liked McCain more than Obama. As far as Grimm's Staten Island district, I think Hurricane Sandy made Obama look really good.

Male, PA-15, Libertarian leaning-Republican

SI is also trending Democratic
An influx of Hispanic immigrants has changed the forgotten borough's politics. Romney would have won it had Hurricance Sandy not struck the Island a week before. However, his numbers would have resembled McCain's (who garnered 51.7% of the vote in SI) more than Bush's (who won an impressive 56.4% back in '04).

Romney's poor performance surely buoyed SI Dems; McMahon, Grimm's predecessor, is now reportedly eyeing a rematch. Despite all the signs of a McMahon victory in 2014 (SI's move to the left, Grimm's baggage, McMahon's solid favorable, etc.), I think the fmr. congressman would begin the race as an underdog. He'd have to run up a sizeable margin in the Brooklyn part of the district to overcome an expected loss in SI. Nevertheless, if he does run, expect it to be a marquee race. Dems got nowhere else to go, as evidenced by House Majority Pac's absurd selection of the 10 most vulnerable GOP reps (Steve Southerland...what the @%&$?)

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
Romney District Dems are centrists
Of the 7 Romney District Dems that have a Congressional voting record (Kirkpatrick, Barber, Barrow, McIntyre, Rahall, Matheson and Peterson) I would consider all of them to be centrists and not liberals, based on what I know of their voting records. So they survive in these districts by voting in an independent manner.  We will have to see if Murphy and Gallego follow suit. Enjoyed your analysis.

Agreed. We must watch Murphy and Gallego
Gallego won the Democratic nomination by running to the left of Ciro Rodriguez. LCV ran ads assailing Rodriguez for supporting Bush's oil policies.

Murphy was a big beneficiary of DKE support. Although they probably supported him just because of his opponent, DKE did a lot for Murphy, giving him much-needed coverage when the chattering class assumed he was a goner.

I suspect that Gallego and Murphy will veer to the right. Gallego has already joined the Blue Dog Coalition. And Murhpy is only a recent Democratic convert (he supported Romney in '08 and was a Republican up until 2011). That being, I doubt either of them will buck party line too much, but that won't stop them from playing the moderate card in November.  

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
Murphy more likely to veer to the center
I think Murphy is more likely to veer to the center than Gallego.  Murphy is a businessman, who as you point out, was recently a Republican.  He only won the district by about 2100 votes against a controversial Republican candidate.  I'm sure this Romney district will be a top Republican target, and if they can find a candidate who doesn't alienate voters they have a good chance of capturing it.  So I find it hard to believe Murphy will vote like a liberal Dem, particularly since 2014 is not likely to be as good a year for Dems as 2012.  

With regard to the Staten Island Congressional District, I think Grimm is likely to hold it, unless more negative info about campaign ethics violations comes out.  Like Chris Christie, he performed well in his response to Superstorm Sandy.  He was the one who urged Mayor Bloomberg to cancel the NYC Marathon, pointing out there was tremendous devastation in some areas, and bodies were still being searched for (about half the deaths in NYC from Sandy were on Staten Island, NYC's smallest boro in terms of population).


[ Parent ]
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