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The Worst Republican Senate Candidates of 2010, Part 1

by: Inoljt

Sun Jan 09, 2011 at 10:22 AM EST

This is the first part of two posts analyzing patterns in the 2010 Senate midterm elections. The second part can be found here.

The 2010 congressional midterm elections constituted, by and large, a victory for the Republican Party. In the Senate Republicans gained six seats. While this was somewhat below expectations, it was much better than Republican hopes just after 2008 - when many expected the party to actually lose seats.

The Senate results provide some interesting fodder for analysis. The table below indicates which Republicans Senate candidates did the worst in 2008. It does so by taking the Republican margin of victory or defeat in a given state and subtracting this by the Cook PVI of the state (the Cook PVI is how a state would be expected to vote in a presidential election in the event of an exact tie nationwide). Given that Republicans won the nationwide vote this year, the average Republican candidate would be expected to do better than the state's PVI. A bad Republican candidate would actually do worse than the state's PVI.

Let's take a look at this table below the flip.

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Learning from 1994 (Part II)

by: Crisitunity

Wed Apr 07, 2010 at 4:14 PM EDT

This week we're taking an in-depth, multi-part look at the 1994 election, as a means of divining what the 2010 election may hold for us in the House. To do so, we're looking at some of the myths that seem to have taken hold regarding 1994; yesterday, for instance, we addressed the idea that 1994 was full of unpredictable, arbitrary wipeouts -- which it wasn't (our House Vulnerability Index did a spot-on job of predicting likelihood of losing compared with other Democrats).

Today, we're looking at a couple more myths. They're all interrelated -- open seats and freshman status weigh heavily on the House Vulnerability Index -- but it lets us slice and dice the data some new ways:

Myth 2) The losses in the 1994 election were disproportionately in the South, as historically Democratic districts that had started going Republican at the presidential level finally flipped downballot too.

No, not true. There's plenty of reason to think this was the case (as I did until I started doing this research), as the 1992 round of redistricting rejiggered a number of districts in a way that was potentially harmful to moderate white Democrats elected by a coalition of African-Americans and working-class whites. With the creation of odd-shaped VRA-districts in a number of states, starting in 1992, moderate Democrats found themselves with the choice of either primaries against African-Americans in VRA districts, or against Republicans in much more conservative suburban/rural districts.

However, it turns out most of the impact from this occurred immediately in 1992, not 1994. For instance, the two Birmingham-area districts, which supported moderate Dems Claude Harris and Ben Erdreich, got turned into the mostly-white 6th and mostly-black 7th, which thus in 1992 turned into liberal Dem Earl Hilliard and conservative GOPer Spencer Bachus. Similarly, in 1992, long-time Democratic Rep. Walter Jones Sr. retired when he found himself in a now black-majority NC-01; his son, Walter Jones Jr., lost the Dem primary to Eva Clayton. In fact, this gave rise to perhaps the only Dem loss in 1994 that seems directly related to the VRA gerrymander: Rep. Martin Lancaster survived the 1992 election reasonably well despite having lost many of NC-03's African-American voters to next-door NC-01, but in 1994 faced off against the younger Jones, now a Republican (and whose dad had represented many of NC-03's voters prior to the redistricting), and lost.

It's possible that Stephen Neal in NC-05, who got a nastier district in 1992 after having the black parts of Winston-Salem moved into the newly-formed NC-12 and then won by only 7% in 1992, may have felt compelled to hit the exits in 1994 primarily because he didn't relish the task of trying to hold the district. At R+4 at the time, though, that wasn't a particularly bad district. Norm Sisisky's VA-04 also seems to have gotten worse post-1992 because of the gerrymandering of VA-03, but he still survived 1994 unscathed and held that district until his 2001 death. (If you can think of any other examples, please discuss in the comments. For instance, the creation of GA-11 or FL-03 may have had some consequences I'm not thinking of.)

The South (as defined by the US Census with one exception -- I'm treating Maryland and Delaware as Northeast) did lose more Democratic seats than any other region of the country, that much is true. But that's mostly because there were more Democratic seats in the South than any other region of the country; in terms of the overall win/loss percentage, the Democrats actually fared slightly better in the South than in the Midwest or West. In addition, much of what happened in the South was because of open seats; there were certainly more open seats in the South, while the South's freshmen and veterans tended to fare better than those in the Midwest and West. There may be something of a chicken and egg effect here -- old-timer Reps. in the South may have sensed trouble a-brewin' and gotten out of the way, meaning that the inevitable losses took the form of open seats instead of defeated veterans -- but, as we saw yesterday, open seats are the hardest to defend and the mass retirements (15 in the South) seemed to compound the disaster.

The one region where the Democrats performed notably better than the norm was the Northeast (their casualty rate in defensive races was only 11%, compared with 22% overall). That's largely because there are so many safely-blue districts in the major cities of the Northeast; there were fewer suburban or rural seats there, which were the types that the GOP picked up in 1994. (The Dems faring comparatively well in 1994 in the Northeast helped pave the wave for their near-total dominance there now, as they gradually picked up suburban districts that leaned blue at the presidential level over the following decade.)

--- South Mid-
west
West North-
east
Nationwide
Seats
Defended
86 61 55 54 256
All Seats
Won
67 45 40 48 200
All Seats
Lost
19 16 15 6 56
Casualty
Rate
22% 26% 27% 11% 22%
All Open
Seats
15 8 4 4 31
Open Seats
Lost
11 6 3 2 22
Open Seat
Casualty Rate
73% 75% 75% 50% 71%
All
Freshmen
22 14 17 13 66
Freshmen
Lost
3 4 7 2 16
Freshmen
Casualty Rate
13% 29% 41% 15% 24%
All
Veterans
49 39 34 37 159
Veterans
Lost
5 6 5 2 18
Veteran
Casualty Rate
10% 15% 15% 5% 11%

This table also brings us to another myth which we'll talk about today:

Myth 3) Veterans fell victim to the slaughter just as much as newcomers.

No, not at all. (This myth -- which may have arisen just because of the sheer shock of losing Foley and Rostenkowski -- we sort of discussed yesterday, in the context of how the losses that were suffered in 1994 were largely predictable. That's because the House Vulnerability Index that I've developed places the highest level of vulnerability on open seats, and then tends to rate frosh as next-most-vulnerable, generally because they usually win their initial election by narrower margins than do veterans. But we'll talk about it some more today.)

As you can see, the safest place to be in 1994 was among the ranks of veterans (and you'd be extra-safe as a veteran in the Northeast). The GOP picked up the large majority of open seats, and cut a decent-sized swath through the freshmen, but 89% of the veterans lived to fight again. In fact, as you'll notice from the lists above, the numbers of the freshmen who lost in actually competitive seats (based on Cook Partisan Voting Index) nearly rivals the rate at which open seats fell, if you factor in the large number of freshmen in newly-created 1992 VRA seats that weren't going to go Republican under any circumstances. Compare the survival rate among freshmen in the South (where most were in new VRA seats) with the survival rate among freshmen in the West (where there was little creation of VRA seats, compounded by the Dems' particularly egregious -- and, to me, rather inexplicable -- collapse in Washington state).

If you look at the list of winners and losers in each region in the lists that are over the fold, you can see the point in the PVIs where you shift from D+s to R+s as being the point where open seats and freshmen started falling. In the interest of space, I didn't list all veterans who survived, but, by contrast, there were many who did so even while in seriously GOP-leaning turf. Was that because they hedged their bets by voting against big-ticket Democratic agenda items like the Clinton budget and the assault weapon ban, which were presumably unpopular in their conservative districts? Well, that's something we'll talk about in the coming days.

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Learning from 1994 (Part I)

by: Crisitunity

Tue Apr 06, 2010 at 12:29 PM EDT

The ghost of 1994 has kept hanging over the House Democrats' heads almost this entire Congress. That's more the product of conventional wisdom feeding upon itself and turning into a self-fulfilling prophecy than anything else, but there are legitimate warning signs on the road ahead: not just the natural pendulum-swinging that occurs during almost every midterm against the party that controls all levels of power, but also clues like the Republicans moving into the lead in many generic congressional ballots and polls showing Republicans competitive in individual House races (although many of those polls are either internals or from dubious pollsters).

On the other hand, there are plenty of reasons to expect that, while the Democrats may lose seats, there won't be a 1994-level wipeout. There aren't as many retirements as in 1994 (where the Dems had 28 open seats), and certainly not as many retirements in unpleasantly red seats (17 of those 1994 retirements were in GOP-leaning seats according to the Cook Political Report's Partisan Voting Index - compared with only 8 facing us in 2010). There are still lots of polls, of the non-Rasmussen variety, giving the Dems an edge in the generic ballot. The DCCC has a sizable financial advantage, and maybe most importantly, the DCCC and its individual members appear acutely aware of the potential danger, unlike in '94, when they seemed to blithely sail into disaster.

This week we're going to be doing a multi-part series looking at the House in 1994, trying to draw some parallels and applying those lessons to today. To make this investigation as accessible as possible, we're going to frame it in terms of a number of myths about 1994, and see how much reality there is to them. For instance, were the members who lost done in by their "yes" votes on tough bills? And was the impact of the post-1992, post-Voting Rights Act redistricting a killer for moderate southern Dems suddenly cast into more difficult districts? Those are problems we'll look at in the next few days. For today, we'll start with:

Myth #1: Losses in 1994 were full of surprises: the old and the new, the vulnerable and the safe were swept away together by the tide.

No, not especially true. According to standard diagnostic tools (such as Cook PVI or the 1992 victory margins of individual House members), the vulnerable seats were lost; the not-so-vulnerable seats were retained. The House Vulnerability Index that I've applied in several posts to today's electoral cycle, in fact, does a pretty remarkable job of predicting who would have lost in 1994. If you aren't familiar with it, it simply combines PVI and previous victory margin into one handy value that rates a particular member's vulnerability relative to other members of the same party. (For open seats, the HVI uses a victory margin of zero.) It doesn't predict how likely a person is to lose - that depends heavily on the nature of the year - but it does predict likelihood of losing relative to other members of the party. (Cook hasn't officially released PVIs for this era as far as I know, but I calculated them based on the 1988 and 1992 presidential election data for each district, according to post-1992 district lines.)

As it turns out, the HVI shows that, of the 25 most vulnerable seats in 1994, 23 were lost to the Republicans. Of seats 26 through 50, another 13 were lost. And of pre-1994 Democratic House members outside the top 100 in terms of vulnerability, there were only seven losses. In other words, the wave in 1994 was high enough that it claimed not only the open seats in red districts, but sloshed upward to claim a herd of freshmen in difficult districts and also veterans who'd had troubles in recent re-elections. (But what it didn't do was claim more than a handful of those who seemed "invulnerable" either because of district lean or 1992 margin or both.)

District Rep. 1992
Margin
Margin
Rating
PVI PVI
Rating
Total
FL-01 Open (Hutto) 0 0 R+20 1 1
FL-15 Open (Bacchus) 0 0 R+14 5 5
SC-03 Open (Derrick) 0 0 R+13 8 8
AZ-01 Open (Coppersmith) 0 0 R+9 13 13
GA-08 Open (Rowland) 0 0 R+8 16 16
IN-02 Open (Sharp) 0 0 R+8 19 19
MS-01 Open (Whitten) 0 0 R+7 23 23
NC-02 Open (Valentine) 0 0 R+7 24 24
OK-04 Open (McCurdy) 0 0 R+7 28 28
NE-02 Hoagland 2.4% 15 R+8 15 30
TN-03 Open (Lloyd) 0 0 R+5 36 36
UT-02 Shepherd 3.7% 20 R+8 17 37
WA-04 Inslee 1.7% 12 R+7 30 42
PA-06 Holden 4.1% 23 R+7 22 45
GA-10 Johnson 7.6% 37 R+10 12 49
CA-19 Lehman 0.5% 2 R+4 48 50
NC-05 Open (Neal) 0 0 R+4 50 50
NY-01 Hochbrueckner 3.1% 17 R+6 34 51
NJ-02 Open (Hughes) 0 0 R+4 52 52
PA-13 Margolies-Mezvinsky 0.5% 3 R+4 51 54
OH-06 Strickland 1.4% 9 R+4 46 55
VA-11 Byrne 4.8% 24 R+5 38 62
MI-10 Bonior 8.9% 44 R+7 21 65
KS-02 Open (Slattery) 0 0 R+2 68 68
TN-04 Open (Cooper) 0 0 R+2 70 70
MI-08 Open (Carr) 0 0 R+1 74 74
VA-02 Pickett 12.1% 66 R+11 9 75
OH-02 Mann 2.5% 16 * R+2 61 77
IL-11 Open (Sangmeister) 0 0 R+1 78 78
KS-04 Glickman 9.6% 49 R+6 31 80
NC-03 Lancaster 11.2% 60 R+8 20 80
GA-07 Darden 14.6% 76 R+11 10 86
ME-01 Open (Andrews) 0 0 R+0 86 86
MN-07 Peterson 1.3% 6 R+1 80 86
MN-02 Minge 0.2% 1 R+0 87 88
CA-36 Harman 6.2% 31 R+3 59 90
MI-12 Levin 6.9% 34 R+3 57 91
MN-01 Open (Penny) 0 0 D+1 94 94
GA-09 Deal 18.4% 89 R+14 6 95
IN-08 McCloskey 7.2% 36 R+2 63 99
NJ-08 Klein 5.9% 29 R+1 72 101
OR-05 Open (Kopetski) 0 0 D+2 101 101
MT-AL Williams 3.5% 19 R+0 83 102
OH-18 Open (Applegate) 0 0 D+2 104 104
PA-15 McHale 5.6% 27 R+1 77 104
MO-09 Volkmer 2.3% 14 D+1 93 107
OH-19 Fingerhut 5.3% 25 R+0 82 107
TX-04 Hall 20.0% 96 R+11 11 107
AZ-06 English 11.6% 64 R+4 45 109
FL-05 Thurman 5.8% 28 R+1 81 109
ND-AL Pomeroy 17.4% 84 R+7 25 109
MD-05 Hoyer 9.1% 45 R+2 65 110
WA-02 Open (Swift) 0 0 D+2 110 110
UT-03 Orton 22.3% 109 R+18 2 111
ID-01 LaRocco 20.6% 98 R+9 14 112
NJ-06 Pallone 7.7% 38 R+1 73 111
OK-02 Open (Synar) 0 0 D+3 117 117
IN-03 Roemer 14.9% 78 R+5 40 118
IN-04 Long 24.1% 114 R+13 7 121
WI-01 Barca 0.6% * 4 D+3 118 122
NY-26 Hinchey 3.3% 18 D+2 105 123
TX-25 Open (Andrews) 0 0 D+3 126 126
KY-03 Open (Mazzoli) 0 0 D+3 127 127
FL-11 Gibbons 12.2% 67 R+2 62 129
MS-05 Taylor 27.8% 127 R+16 3 130
CA-03 Fazio 10.9% 59 R+1 75 134
CA-49 Schenk 8.5% 41 D+1 95 136
TN-06 Gordon 16.0% 81 R+3 56 137
NC-07 Rose 15.9% 80 R+3 58 138
TX-13 Sarpalius 20.7% 99 R+5 39 138
MI-13 Open (Ford) 0 0 D+4 139 139
AL-03 Browder 22.7% 113 R+7 27 140
CA-42 Brown 6.7% 32 D+2 108 140
SC-05 Spratt 22.5% 111 R+6 32 143
MI-01 Stupak 10.3% 55 D+0 89 144
NC-08 Hefner 21.1% 102 R+5 44 146
NY-18 Lowey 9.5% 48 D+1 99 147
OH-03 Hall 19.3% 92 R+3 55 147
WA-05 Foley 10.4% 56 D+1 92 148
CT-02 Gejdenson 1.6% 11 D+4 138 149
KY-06 Baesler 21.4% 105 R+4 47 152
MI-09 Kildee 8.9% 42 D+3 113 155
NH-02 Swett 26.0% 119 R+5 43 162
OR-01 Furse 4.1% 22 D+4 140 162
IL-03 Lipinski 27.0% 122 R+5 42 164
WA-09 Kreidler 8.9% 43 D+3 122 165
OH-13 Brown 18.1% 87 R+1 79 166
MO-06 Danner 10.9% 58 D+3 111 169
NY-05 Ackerman 6.1% 30 D+5 143 173
NY-28 Slaughter 10.4% 57 D+3 116 173
WA-01 Cantwell 12.9% 70 D+2 103 173
TX-16 Coleman 3.8% 21 D+6 155 176
CA-01 Hamburg 2.6% 16 D+7 164 180
TX-17 Stenholm 32.1% 147 R+6 33 180
NY-29 LaFalce 11.4% 62 D+3 123 185
TX-12 Geren 25.5% 118 R+2 67 185
MA-05 Meehan 14.7% 77 D+2 109 186
AL-05 Cramer 33.6% 152 R+6 35 187
PA-20 Open (Murphy) 0 0 D+11 192 192
VA-09 Boucher 26.2% 121 R+2 71 192

The two survivors in 1994 from the top 25 are David Bonior, a member of leadership, and Tim Holden, then a freshman. Both, however, are guys who fit their blue-collar districts well (with a mix of pro-labor and socially conservative stances), and who have since proved their campaign mettle repeatedly (with Bonior holding down his difficult district for many years, and with Holden surprising everyone by surviving the 2002 gerrymander that targeted him for extinction). Among the most predictable losses in 1994, open seats led the way. However, losses among the most vulnerable incumbents included both frosh in red districts (Karen Shepherd and Jay Inslee were the most vulnerable) and veterans with tenuous holds on difficult districts (starting with Peter Hoagland and George Hochbrueckner, who both narrowly escaped 1992).

(The two italicized races above required some manual adjustment. OH-01 initially seems safe because David Mann technically had no Republican opponent in 1992. However, he defeated Stephen Grote, a Republican who ran as an independent due to problems with his GOP nominating papers, by just 2.5%, so it seems appropriate to use that number instead. In WI-01, Peter Barca needs to be evaluated by his narrow 1993 special election victory, rather than Les Aspin's convincing '92 general election victory.)

The seven who lost despite being outside of the top 100 most vulnerable are an interesting mixed bag. The popular perception (perhaps helped along by the mainstream media, shocked to see their frequent cocktail party compatriots swept away) of the 1994 election is that many "old bulls" were swept out of power. In reality, only a few were: depending on who you count as an "old bull," it's more or less 4. They mostly fall in this 100+ area; in fact, the only legendary figure to lose who wasn't in this range was then-Speaker of the House Tom Foley, who clocked in at #79. Most of the other vulnerable incumbents who lost weren't legends but are little remembered today, perhaps except for for Dan Glickman (who went on to run the MPAA), Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky (famous mostly for being 94's iconic loser), and Dick Swett (who just has a hilarious name).

Another perception is that there was a major house-cleaning of Reps caught up in the House banking scandal or sundry other corruption, but only one falls in this category: Dan Rostenkowski. "Old bulls" Judiciary chair Jack Brooks and Appropriations cardinal Neal Smith weren't implicated in anything, but rather just seem to have been caught napping -- as was the less-senior David Price, who returned to the House in 1996, where he remains today. (Most of the House banking scandal-related house-cleaning occurred in 1992, often in Democratic primaries rather than the general.)

Rank District Rep. 1992
Margin
Margin
Rating
PVI PVI
Rating
Total
102 KY-01 Barlow 21.3% 104 D+0 90 194
104 TX-09 Brooks 10.1% 52 D+5 142 194
107 NV-01 Bilbray 19.9% 95 D+1 100 195
113 WA-03 Unsoeld 11.9% 65 D+4 136 201
124 IL-05 Rostenkowski 18.2% 88 D+5 146 234
129 NC-04 Price 30.9% 142 D+1 96 238
135 IA-04 Smith 25.1% 115 D+4 135 250

The Vulnerability Index was even highly predictive of losses of Republican seats (and yes, there were some: a total of four, all open seats in Dem-leaning districts). Of the top 6 most vulnerable Republican-held seats, 4 were Democratic pickups. In any other year, several of these incumbents probably would have also been taken out.

District Rep. 1992
Margin
Margin
Rating
PVI PVI
Rating
Total
PA-18 Open (Santorum) 0 0 D+11 2 2
RI-01 Open (Machtley) 0 0 D+11 3 3
IA-02 Nussle 1.1% 3 D+6 8 11
IA-03 Lightfoot 1.9% 5 D+6 6 11
MN-06 Open (Grams) 0 0 D+2 14 14
ME-02 Open (Snowe) 0 0 D+1 15 15
NY-30 Quinn 5.4% 21 D+12 1 22
AR-04 Dickey 4.7% 19 D+6 7 26
MA-03 Blute 6.1% 25 D+5 9 34
CA-38 Horn 5.2% 20 D+1 18 38

So, what lessons might we infer from all this? First, we should probably expect to kiss a number of our open seats, especially ones in red districts, goodbye, as open seats are the first to fall. (In 1994, the GOP ran the table on all Dem-held open seats in GOP-leaning districts and even into most of swing territory; the reddest open seat Dems held in '94 was the D+3 TX-25, retained by Ken Bentsen.) We shouldn't be surprised to see some losses among the freshmen either, as they tend to wind up high up the Vulnerability Index (because freshmen usually win their prior elections - i.e., their first - by narrower margins than veterans win theirs). And finally, we can still hope to pick up a handful of the most vulnerable GOP-held seats regardless of the size of the GOP wave (you can probably name the same ones I'm thinking of: DE-AL, LA-02, and IL-10).

Discuss :: (50 Comments)

PBI (Party Brand Index) Part 9: Arizona

by: dopper0189

Thu Nov 12, 2009 at 7:49 AM EST

PBI or Party Brand Index is a concept I developed (with some much appreciated help from pl515) as a replacement for PVI.  PVI (Partisan Voting Index), which is measured by averaging the percentage of the vote from the last two presidential elections in each house district, and comparing it to the nation as a whole, is a useful shorthand for understanding the liberal v. conservative dynamics of a district. But PVI in my opinion it falls short in a number of areas. First it doesn't explain states like Arkansas or West Virginia. These states have districts who's PVIs indicates a Democrat shouldn't win, yet Democrats (outside of the presidency) win quite handily. Secondly why is this the case in Arkansas but not Oklahoma with similar PVI rated districts?

Lastly PVI can miss trends as it takes 4 years to readjust. The purpose of Party Brand Index is to give a better idea of how a candidate does not relative to how the presidential candidate did, but compared to how their generic PARTY should be expected to perform. I've tackled IN, NC, CO, VA, MO, OK, AR, WV, NH, OH, and Florida. Now I will look at the fast becoming a purple state of Arizona

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PBI (Party Brand Index) Part 8: Florida

by: dopper0189

Wed Oct 28, 2009 at 10:32 AM EDT

PBI or Party Brand Index is a concept I developed (with some much appreciated help from pl515) as a replacement for PVI.  PVI (Partisan Voting Index), which is measured by averaging the percentage of the vote from the last two presidential elections in each house district, and comparing it to the nation as a whole, is a useful shorthand for understanding the liberal v. conservative dynamics of a district. But PVI in my opinion it falls short in a number of areas. First it doesn't explain states like Arkansas or West Virginia. These states have districts who's PVIs indicates a Democrat shouldn't win, yet Democrats (outside of the presidency) win quite handily. Secondly why is this the case in Arkansas but not Oklahoma with similar PVI rated districts?

Lastly PVI can miss trends as it takes 4 years to readjust. The purpose of Party Brand Index is to give a better idea of how a candidate does not relative to how the presidential candidate did, but compared to how their generic PARTY should be expected to perform. I've tackled IN, NC, CO, VA, MO, OK, AR, WV, NH,and OH. Now I will look at the swing state of Florida.

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PBI (Party Brand Index) Part 7: Ohio

by: dopper0189

Sat Sep 26, 2009 at 1:56 PM EDT

PBI or Party Brand Index is a concept I developed (with some much appreciated help from pl515) as a replacement for PVI.  PVI (Partisan Voting Index), which is measured by averaging the percentage of the vote from the last two presidential elections in each house district, and comparing it to the nation as a whole, is a useful shorthand for understanding the liberal v. conservative dynamics of a district. But PVI in my opinion it falls short in a number of areas. First it doesn't explain states like Arkansas or West Virginia. These states have districts who's PVIs indicates a Democrat shouldn't win, yet Democrats (outside of the presidency) win quite handily. Secondly why is this the case in Arkansas but not Oklahoma with similar PVI rated districts?

Lastly PVI can miss trends as it takes 4 years to readjust. The purpose of Party Brand Index is to give a better idea of how a candidate does not relative to how the presidential candidate did, but compared to how their generic PARTY should be expected to perform. I've tackled IN, NC, CO, VA, MO, OK, AR, WV, and NH. Now I will look at the swing state of Ohio.

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PBI (Party Brand Index) Part 6: West Virginia & New Hampshire

by: dopper0189

Sun Sep 06, 2009 at 10:07 AM EDT

PBI or Party Brand Index is a concept I developed (with some much appreciated help from pl515) as a replacement for PVI.  PVI (Partisan Voting Index), which is measured by averaging the percentage of the vote from the last two presidential elections in each house district, and comparing it to the nation as a whole, is a useful shorthand for understanding the liberal v. conservative dynamics of a district. But PVI in my opinion it falls short in a number of areas. First it doesn't explain states like Arkansas or West Virginia. These states have districts who's PVIs indicates a Democrat shouldn't win, yet Democrats (outside of the presidency) win quite handily. Secondly why is this the case in Arkansas but not Oklahoma with similar PVI rated districts?

Lastly PVI can miss trends as it takes 4 years to readjust. The purpose of Party Brand Index is to give a better idea of how a candidate does not relative to how the presidential candidate did, but compared to how their generic PARTY should be expected to perform. I've tackled IN, NC, CO, VA, MO, OK, AR, now I will look at the swing states of West Virginia and New Hampshire.

There's More... :: (1 Comments, 835 words in story)

PBI (Party Brand Index) Part 5: Nevada & Iowa

by: dopper0189

Mon Aug 24, 2009 at 9:58 PM EDT

PBI or Party Brand Index is a concept I developed (with some much appreciated help from pl515) as a replacement for PVI.  PVI (Partisan Voting Index), which is measured by averaging the percentage of the vote from the last two presidential elections in each house district, and comparing it to the nation as a whole, is a useful shorthand for understanding the liberal v. conservative dynamics of a district. But PVI in my opinion it falls short in a number of areas. First it doesn't explain states like Arkansas or West Virginia. These states have districts who's PVIs indicates a Democrat shouldn't win, yet Democrats (outside of the presidency) win quite handily. Secondly why is this the case in Arkansas but not Oklahoma with similar PVI rated districts?

Lastly PVI can miss trends as it takes 4 years to readjust. The purpose of Party Brand Index is to give a better idea of how a candidate does not relative to how the presidential candidate did, but compared to how their generic PARTY should be expected to perform. I've tackled IN, NC, CO, VA, MO, OK, AR, now I will look at the swing states of Nevada and Iowa.

There's More... :: (5 Comments, 976 words in story)

PBI (Party Brand Index) Part 4: Missouri, Arkansas & Oklahoma

by: dopper0189

Sun Aug 09, 2009 at 11:06 AM EDT

Continuing on with a concept I developed called PBI or Party Brand Index (with some much appreciated help from pl515) as a replacement for PVI.  PVI (Partisan Voting Index), which is measured by averaging the percentage of the vote from the last two presidential elections in each house district, and comparing it to the nation as a whole, is a useful shorthand for understanding the liberal v. conservative dynamics of a district. But PVI in my opinion it falls short in a number of areas. First it doesn't explain states like Arkansas or West Virginia. These states have districts who's PVIs indicates a Democrat shouldn't win, yet Democrats (outside of the presidency) win quite handily. Secondly why is this the case in Arkansas but not Oklahoma with similar PVI rated districts?

Lastly PVI can miss trends as it takes 4 years to readjust. The purpose of Party Brand Index is to give a better idea of how a candidate does not relative to how the presidential candidate did, but compared to how their generic PARTY should be expected to perform. Last week I tackled NC, this week I'm tackling MO, OK, AR.

There's More... :: (4 Comments, 1159 words in story)

PBI (Party Brand Index) Part 3: North Carolina

by: dopper0189

Tue Aug 04, 2009 at 1:04 PM EDT

I have been working on a concept I'm calling PBI or Party Brand Index, as a replacement for PVI.  PVI (Partisan Voting Index), which is measured by averaging voting percentage from the last two presidential elections in each house district, and comparing it to how the nation as a whole voted, is a useful shorthand for understanding the liberal v. conservative dynamics of a district. But in my opinion it falls short in a number of areas. First it doesn't explain states like Arkansas or West Virginia. These states have districts who's PVI indicates a Democrat shouldn't win, yet Democrats (outside of the presidency) win quite handily. Secondly why is this the case in Arkansas but not Oklahoma with similar PVI rated districts?

Secondly PVI can miss trends as it takes 4 years to readjust. The main purpose of Party Brand Index is to give a better idea of how a candidate does not relative to how the presidential candidate did, but compared to how their generic PARTY would be expected to perform. This week I'll tackle North Carolina.

There's More... :: (3 Comments, 850 words in story)
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