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View Diary: Alaska senate race 2014: Can Begich hold on? (11 comments)

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  •  Begich win is about raw numbers, not percentages. (7+ / 0-)

    In 2008:
    Obama got 123,000 votes. Total votes: 316,000.
    Ethan Berkowitz, running against Rep Don Young, got 147,000, losing by 16,000. Total House votes: 300,000.
    Begich, running against (up til then very popular Ted Stevens, got 151,000. Total Senate votes: 298,000.

    So 18,000 fewer people voted in the Senate race, yet Begich got about 28,000 more votes than Obama.

    In 2010:

    In a 3-way Senate race, turnout is about 250,00. (Typical for non-presidential years in Alaska.)

    Murkowski (write-in): 100,000
    Miller: 90,000
    Scott McAdams: 60,000

    In the governor's race that year, turnout is slightly less than 250,000.

    Sean Parnell: 151,000
    Ethan Berkowtiz: 96,000

    So an unknown Democrat (McAdams) got 60k, and a well-known Democrat (Berkowitz) got about 100k.

    2012:

    Turnout dropped in the presidential race. 286,000 voted. What's notable is that Obama got almost exactly the same number of votes he did in 2008:

    Obama: 122,000
    Romney: 164,000

    This tells me that there is a base of voters who will vote for Begich that at a minimum includes 122,000 people who voted for Obama ( twice) and Begich once.

    In addition there are about 28,000 people who were not willing to vote for Obama, but were willing to vote for Begich.

    Begich's challenge is identifying those Obama-Begich voters and turning them out ( shouldn't be hard to identify, given the Obama campaign machinery), and more importantly identifying and turning out those additional 28,000 people who voted for him in 2008 but not Obama either time.

    If he does that, he should get about 150,000 votes, and the only way the Republican wins is if they crank up their turnout so that overall turnout is over 300,000---more akin to a presidential year than an off-year Senate election.

    Resist much, obey little. ~~Edward Abbey, via Walt Whitman

    by willyr on Sun Mar 16, 2014 at 07:30:44 AM PDT

    •  great analysis ! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      willyr, plf515, camlbacker

      KOS: "Mocking partisans focusing on elections? Even less reason to be on Daily Kos."

      by fcvaguy on Sun Mar 16, 2014 at 08:24:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Even in off years a Democrat will get about 100k (7+ / 0-)

        100,000 votes is about the reliable baseline for a Democrat in a statewide race (House, Senate, Governor, President.)
        Established Dems like Berkowitz and Begich, and before them, Tony Knowles--who each held highly visible elected positions---can count on about 100k votes without sweating.

        The 2010 Senate race was an exception, because many Democrats and independents who might have voted for last-minute candidate Scott McAdams---until then an obscure mayor of a small town---rightly knew that if they did so they might make tea Partier Joe Miller a U.S. Senator. So instead, about 35-40,000 of them wrote-in Lisa Murkowski.

        This year, if there is a 3-way race (Miller & a Republican) it is far more likely that independents will vote for Begich.

        Resist much, obey little. ~~Edward Abbey, via Walt Whitman

        by willyr on Sun Mar 16, 2014 at 08:42:39 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  which would tilt the race to begich (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          plf515, camlbacker, fcvaguy

          begich might get 40% the r candidate 35, and miller 25 in that case. milers a full on nutjob who has called for the federal government to return basically all the land they own-about 70% of the state- to Alaska. Um sorry joe , it doesn't work that way, you fruitcake. alaska can barely manage the 100 million acres it has now, no way could it manage 275 million more. states don;t get to demand the feds turn over land anyway, thanks to the supremacy clause, the only way they get land from the feds is thrugh selling surplus or land swaps.

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