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View Diary: Daily Kos Elections Live Digest: 2/15 (237 comments)

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  •  PVI Calculation; Question on 1964/1968 (5+ / 0-)

    Hey guys. I'm currently starting what might become a DKE project of mine, and I want to get a few preliminary things done before delving into it further. Starting off, I'm trying to calculate the PVI of every state going back to 1960 (the first Presidential election that included all 50 states; I might go back as far as 1932 to get more data included). I've already done Alabama, Alaska, and Indiana, and I just want to make sure that I'm doing everything correctly when I calculate PVI. Can someone help double-check to make sure I'm doing this correctly? In this case, I'm just calculating simple PVI. I know that composite PVI is the combination of one year's PVI and the PVI from the cycle before:

    1.)  Add the national vote totals of the two major parties together to assess the total two-party vote.
    2.)  Divide each party's national vote share by the total national two-party vote share.
    3.)  Subtract the loser's vote percentage from the winner's vote percentage to assess the national two-party margin of victory.

    4.)  Add the state vote totals of the two major parties together to assess the total two-party vote.
    5.)  Divide each party's state vote share by the total state two-party vote share.
    6.)  Subtract the loser's vote percentage from the winner's vote percentage to assess the state two-party margin of victory.

    7.)  Subtract the national margin of victory from the state margin of victory if the party who won the state also won the national popular vote. Add the national margin of victory to the state margin of victory if the party who won the state is different from the party who won the national popular vote.
    8.)  Divide the final result by 2.

    Point 7 might be a bit wordy, but I can reclarify if I need to. I think I'm doing everything correctly so far because the three states I've calculated match the 2008 and 2012 PVIs I've seen publicly discussed. I'd just like to make sure I'm doing this correctly before going forward.

    I also have a question on Alabama. In 1964, LBJ wasn't on the ballot in Alabama (Does anyone know why this was?). In 1968, George Wallace won Alabama by a commanding margin and left both major parties with mid-teen percentages. Is it simply regarded as impossible to extract PVI from these two elections? Would you measure PVI in 1964 as being between Goldwater and "Unpledged Democrats?" Would you measure PVI in 1968 by combining Wallace and Humphrey together, or would you just leave out Humphrey as a third-party and treat Wallace as the de facto Democrat? I wouldn't think these last few ideas would be scientifically reasonable, but I'm not sure what to do with these two elections. And in the cases where he overperformed in the South and may or may not have won other states, how should I measure Wallace's performance in those states? I assume he's just treated like a third-party candidate and should be excluded as in any other election, but I don't know how to address this in calculating PVI.

    Thanks to anyone who can help me on these questions.

    The Pragmatic Progressive (IN-4); Economic Left/Right: -7.12; Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -5.44

    by AndySonSon on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 06:51:52 AM PST

    •  '64 (7+ / 0-)

      LBJ was prevented from getting on the ballot by George Wallace and the segregationist Democratic party.  Insteaad they ran a slate of unpledged electors who lost to Goldwater.

      www.buonoforgovernor.com

      by Paleo on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 07:05:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  It is a nice project (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BeloitDem, MichaelNY

      It would be very interesting if you begin by 1960. I encourage you to do it. It would be a strong reference to compare with.

      •  Project (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        abgin, MichaelNY

        I'm considering taking all of the PVIs of these states and looking at political trends in the last several decades in each of the individual 50 states. I was also thinking that I could look at the broader trends of specific regions as well as the influences that certain factors might have on the trends of a state or region. However, this would be a massive project and I don't know if I would have the time or willpower to go through with it lol. At the very least, I'm wanting to have a database of PVIs going back several decades if I ever need or want to reference them for various reasons. I think having such a database would be useful if I ever needed it for use in class or if I needed it to compare something for DKE.

        The Pragmatic Progressive (IN-4); Economic Left/Right: -7.12; Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -5.44

        by AndySonSon on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 08:03:18 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  If you're measuring the partisanship of the state (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      As opposed to the relative "liberalness" of it, than I'd count Wallace and various other renegade Dixiecrats as the Democratic candidate in states like Alabama where they had the full backing of the state Democratic Party.

    •  former SSP user (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen, MichaelNY

      Californianintexas did this already.  You might want to see if you can find her website.

      And honestly, I'd just skip the 1968 election in the South.  It's such a weird election that anything you come up with will likely be wrong through no fault of your own.

      20, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
      politicohen.com
      Socially libertarian, moderate on foreign policy, immigration, and crime, liberal on everything else.
      UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city. -.5.38, -3.23

      by jncca on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 01:58:44 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  yes (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        anyone have a link to hers?  She had it by county too, IIRC.

        ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

        by James Allen on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 02:01:51 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Here (0+ / 0-)

          I found her page with her county results. I'm very impressed at how thorough this research is. However, it seems that she only covered California extensively. If I go through with my plan, I hope to extensively discuss the trends of all 50 states.

          The Pragmatic Progressive (IN-4); Economic Left/Right: -7.12; Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -5.44

          by AndySonSon on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 11:54:00 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  no, she had a website with I'm pretty sure (0+ / 0-)

            every county in every state.

            ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

            by James Allen on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 10:08:11 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Alabama 1960 is also controversial (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      It definitely rejected Nixon--but can we say it went for JFK?  What won was a mixed slate of pro-JFK and anti-JFK ("unpledged") Democratic electors.  The unpledged ones ultimately voted for Harry Byrd for president.

      The reason this matters a little bit is that the standard view that JFK defeated Nixon in the popular vote depends on assigning all the Alabama Democratic presidential votes to him.  If we don't do that--if instead we divide the Alabama Democratic vote according to the number of JFK and anti-JFK electors--we have to add 1960 to 1824, 1876, 1888, and 2000 as an instance where the winner of the popular vote lost in the Electoral College.

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