Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Lessons from Surprise California Senate win?

The Republican Party is attempting to spin Andy Vidak's "surprise" win in a CA SD-16 special election. They're estimating "he won about 25 percent of the Hispanic vote — double what Republicans usually win in the district." There are a few problems here. If Vidak won 25% of the Hispanic vote, that's actually less than Mitt Romney won nationally. He won 27%. And he certainly didn't win the national vote. Thus, 25% sounds low and questionable in such a Hispanic district. I'd think he'd have to win more. If that's the total, it shows how low Hispanic turn-out is usually. That's possible, since this is a very low turn-out district. In fact the corresponding congressional district was 434 out of 435 in turn-out in 2012.

We also should keep in mind that turn-out here was low, even for this district. Turn-out was 69% of the 2010 turn-out. So 25% is only about 5,000 voters more than the 12.5% they usually get in the district. That's not doing a great job. It's just making sure your voters vote.

This is a district with rural Hispanics, who vote differently than urban Hispanics. Whatever lessons we can take from this district can't be applied there.

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