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Below is my second attempt at modeling the upcoming vote in Virginia.  

My results are a narrow Obama victory based on the current polling aggregations, changes in registrations by locality, and the partisan trends by locality over time. The difference in the election right now is the fact that most new voters are in localities whose voting history is favorable to the President.  Even if we allocate those votes conservatively it puts significant wind in the sails of the President's chances.

I have Obama winning by 68,381, or 1.68%, by garnering 50.10% of the vote cast.  As before, if you have a toe on the ground in any of these localities, then I'd be interested in how the model matches your expectations of where things are.  

Since 2008 was a high water mark, Obama margins over Romney will be lower than his margins over McCain in most places.   Based on trends from the 4 prior presidential elections, I think the biggest shifts in the number of voters moving from Obama to Romney will be in these locations:

1) Virginia Beach
2) Chesterfield County
3) Chesapeake City
4) Fairfax County
5) Hanover County
6) Loudon County

This is in part because that is where the votes are.  Obama will crush in Fairfax, but not by 2008 margins.  He should hold Loudon, but it could be a nailbiter.   Romney needs to flip Chesapeake City and run up margins in Va Beach, Chesterfield and Hanover.   Those are probably the 6 best locations to watch for a sense of what is happening when the returns start rolling in.

Based on the final margin between him and his opponent, Obama should be even stronger in Richmond, Charlottesville, Alexandria, Petersburg, Hampton, and Williamsburg than he was in 2008.  He will win smaller percentages of the vote in these localities, but they all have more voters than before and few are persuadable to the Republican side.  Gary Johnson may harvest a few with libertarian leanings.

 


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          
COUNTY/CITY Obama Romney Margin %Obama %Romney 08Margin
ACCOMACK
  COUNTY
7530 8861 -1330 45.26% 53.25% -226
ALBEMARLE
  COUNTY
32553 23944 8609 56.76% 41.75% 9216
ALEXANDRIA
  CITY
55139 21866 33273 70.54% 27.97% 31292
ALLEGHANY
  COUNTY
3281 3994 -713 44.43% 54.08% -162
AMELIA
  COUNTY
2439 4621 -2181 34.04% 64.47% -1482
AMHERST
  COUNTY
5895 9723 -3828 37.18% 61.33% -2376
APPOMATTOX
  COUNTY
2521 5730 -3209 30.10% 68.41% -2262
ARLINGTON
  COUNTY
89390 35370 54021 70.58% 27.93% 49118
AUGUSTA
  COUNTY
9529 26820 -17291 25.82% 72.69% -13295
BATH
  COUNTY
928 1441 -513 38.58% 59.93% -306
BEDFORD
  CITY
1128 1658 -530 39.89% 58.62% -289
BEDFORD
  COUNTY
10572 28764 -18192 26.48% 72.04% -13403
BLAND
  COUNTY
786 2329 -1543 24.86% 73.65% -1167
BOTETOURT
  COUNTY
5274 12986 -7713 28.45% 70.06% -5778
BRISTOL
  CITY
2506 5220 -2714 31.95% 66.56% -1914
BRUNSWICK
  COUNTY
4772 3036 1736 60.21% 38.31% 2096
BUCHANAN
  COUNTY
3412 5146 -1735 39.27% 59.24% -478
BUCKINGHAM
  COUNTY
3428 3875 -447 46.24% 52.27% 61
BUENA
  VISTA CITY
1123 1571 -449 41.05% 57.46% -174
CAMPBELL
  COUNTY
7619 20030 -12411 27.15% 71.37% -9353
CAROLINE
  COUNTY
7396 6491 905 52.47% 46.05% 1546
CARROLL
  COUNTY
3840 9288 -5448 28.82% 69.70% -4078
CHARLES
  CITY COUNTY
2744 1362 1381 65.83% 32.69% 1550
CHARLOTTE
  COUNTY
2425 3548 -1124 39.99% 58.52% -667
CHARLOTTESVILLE
  CITY
18587 4894 13693 77.98% 20.53% 11627
CHESAPEAKE
  CITY
53431 58662 -5231 46.96% 51.56% 1369
CHESTERFIELD
  COUNTY
76922 98537 -21615 43.19% 55.32% -12103
CLARKE
  COUNTY
3500 4418 -917 43.55% 54.96% -383
COLONIAL
  HEIGHTS CITY
2379 6679 -4300 25.87% 72.64% -3599
COVINGTON
  CITY
1214 1132 82 50.98% 47.53% 284
CRAIG
  COUNTY
805 1937 -1131 28.93% 69.58% -818
CULPEPER
  COUNTY
9106 12560 -3454 41.40% 57.11% -1909
CUMBERLAND
  COUNTY
2191 2649 -458 44.60% 53.91% -163
DANVILLE
  CITY
12012 8475 3537 57.76% 40.75% 3991
DICKENSON
  COUNTY
2830 3580 -750 43.49% 55.02% -46
DINWIDDIE
  COUNTY
6162 7410 -1248 44.73% 53.78% -280
EMPORIA
  CITY
1730 967 764 63.21% 35.31% 805
ESSEX
  COUNTY
3039 2708 331 52.10% 46.42% 555
FAIRFAX
  CITY
6423 4850 1573 56.13% 42.38% 1884
FAIRFAX
  COUNTY
326538 223324 103214 58.50% 40.01% 109365
FALLS
  CHURCH CITY
5232 2276 2957 68.65% 29.86% 2725
FAUQUIER
  COUNTY
14825 22136 -7311 39.51% 59.00% -4611
FLOYD
  COUNTY
2772 4974 -2202 35.25% 63.26% -1504
FLUVANNA
  COUNTY
6056 7028 -972 45.60% 52.91% -235
FRANKLIN
  CITY
2677 1635 1042 61.16% 37.35% 1243
FRANKLIN
  COUNTY
9257 18039 -8782 33.41% 65.10% -5796
FREDERICK
  COUNTY
13735 24662 -10927 35.24% 63.27% -7188
FREDERICKSBURG
  CITY
7746 4588 3158 61.87% 36.65% 2742
GALAX
  CITY
938 1412 -474 39.32% 59.19% -265
GILES
  COUNTY
2910 5011 -2101 36.19% 62.32% -1270
GLOUCESTER
  COUNTY
6605 13853 -7248 31.80% 66.71% -5173
GOOCHLAND
  COUNTY
4710 8793 -4084 34.36% 64.15% -2830
GRAYSON
  COUNTY
2226 5024 -2798 30.25% 68.26% -2060
GREENE
  COUNTY
3347 6122 -2775 34.82% 63.69% -1806
GREENSVILLE
  COUNTY
2969 1841 1128 60.81% 37.70% 1393
HALIFAX
  COUNTY
7921 9425 -1504 44.99% 53.53% -474
HAMPTON
  CITY
49227 22311 26917 67.79% 30.72% 26441
HANOVER
  COUNTY
17983 42808 -24825 29.14% 69.37% -18897
HARRISONBURG
  CITY
9669 7250 2419 56.30% 42.21% 2396
HENRICO
  COUNTY
91002 75408 15594 53.87% 44.64% 18942
HENRY
  COUNTY
10082 14684 -4602 40.10% 58.41% -2640
HIGHLAND
  COUNTY
479 896 -417 34.33% 64.18% -340
HOPEWELL
  CITY
5227 4373 854 53.64% 44.87% 1136
ISLE OF
  WIGHT COUNTY
8486 13060 -4574 38.80% 59.71% -2685
JAMES
  CITY COUNTY
18084 24778 -6695 41.56% 56.95% -3560
KING
  & QUEEN COUNTY
1822 1927 -106 47.87% 50.64% 155
KING
  GEORGE COUNTY
4789 7257 -2468 39.16% 59.35% -1415
KING
  WILLIAM COUNTY
3314 5789 -2475 35.86% 62.65% -1622
LANCASTER
  COUNTY
3007 3761 -754 43.77% 54.74% -412
LEE
  COUNTY
2815 6663 -3848 29.26% 69.26% -2606
LEXINGTON
  CITY
1848 1182 666 60.09% 38.42% 629
LOUDOUN
  COUNTY
86803 80196 6607 51.20% 47.31% 11509
LOUISA
  COUNTY
7063 9598 -2535 41.76% 56.75% -1204
LUNENBURG
  COUNTY
2514 3085 -571 44.23% 54.28% -197
LYNCHBURG
  CITY
18104 22193 -4089 44.26% 54.25% -1369
MADISON
  COUNTY
2722 4121 -1399 39.19% 59.32% -896
MANASSAS
  CITY
8410 7099 1310 53.42% 45.10% 1543
MANASSAS
  PARK CITY
2848 1998 851 57.90% 40.61% 829
MARTINSVILLE
  CITY
3948 2326 1622 61.99% 36.52% 1828
MATHEWS
  COUNTY
1756 3773 -2017 31.29% 67.22% -1522
MECKLENBURG
  COUNTY
6960 8682 -1721 43.84% 54.68% -690
MIDDLESEX
  COUNTY
2188 3836 -1648 35.78% 62.73% -1154
MONTGOMERY
  COUNTY
22477 22717 -240 48.99% 49.52% 2003
NELSON
  COUNTY
4172 3938 234 50.68% 47.84% 744
NEW KENT
  COUNTY
3593 7845 -4253 30.94% 67.57% -2892
NEWPORT
  NEWS CITY
52704 30546 22159 62.37% 36.15% 23305
NORFOLK
  CITY
63791 26601 37190 69.52% 28.99% 38005
NORTHAMPTON
  COUNTY
3557 2840 718 54.78% 43.73% 1087
NORTHUMBERLAND
  COUNTY
3155 4381 -1226 41.24% 57.27% -729
NORTON
  CITY
697 860 -163 44.10% 54.41% -1
NOTTOWAY
  COUNTY
3178 3697 -519 45.54% 52.97% -86
ORANGE
  COUNTY
7071 9690 -2619 41.56% 56.95% -1399
PAGE
  COUNTY
3944 6551 -2607 37.02% 61.49% -1806
PATRICK
  COUNTY
2681 6119 -3437 30.02% 68.50% -2612
PETERSBURG
  CITY
14908 1703 13205 88.41% 10.10% 12191
PITTSYLVANIA
  COUNTY
10898 20903 -10005 33.76% 64.75% -7315
POQUOSON
  CITY
1604 5832 -4228 21.25% 77.27% -3481
PORTSMOUTH
  CITY
32190 15029 17161 67.16% 31.36% 18343
POWHATAN
  COUNTY
4142 12001 -7859 25.28% 73.24% -5851
PRINCE
  EDWARD COUNTY
5217 4709 508 51.78% 46.74% 927
PRINCE
  GEORGE COUNTY
7167 9943 -2776 41.27% 57.25% -1622
PRINCE
  WILLIAM COUNTY
108398 84024 24374 55.50% 43.02% 25814
PULASKI
  COUNTY
5400 9791 -4391 35.02% 63.49% -2939
RADFORD
  CITY
2993 2773 220 51.13% 47.38% 512
RAPPAHANNOCK
  COUNTY
2013 2418 -406 44.74% 53.77% -122
RICHMOND
  CITY
79824 20450 59374 78.42% 20.09% 54974
RICHMOND
  COUNTY
1531 2275 -744 39.62% 58.89% -474
ROANOKE
  CITY
24760 16699 8060 58.83% 39.68% 9540
ROANOKE
  COUNTY
18748 33977 -15229 35.03% 63.48% -10759
ROCKBRIDGE
  COUNTY
4187 6504 -2317 38.58% 59.93% -1385
ROCKINGHAM
  COUNTY
10347 26096 -15749 27.97% 70.54% -12015
RUSSELL
  COUNTY
4523 7287 -2764 37.73% 60.78% -1457
SALEM
  CITY
4949 7959 -3011 37.77% 60.75% -1924
SCOTT
  COUNTY
2369 7821 -5453 22.90% 75.61% -4255
SHENANDOAH
  COUNTY
6787 13769 -6982 32.53% 65.99% -5093
SMYTH
  COUNTY
3857 8899 -5042 29.79% 68.72% -3578
SOUTHAMPTON
  COUNTY
4194 5196 -1002 44.00% 54.51% -181
SPOTSYLVANIA
  COUNTY
25818 33611 -7793 42.80% 55.72% -3713
STAFFORD
  COUNTY
27453 35134 -7681 43.21% 55.30% -3505
STAUNTON
  CITY
5733 5936 -202 48.40% 50.11% 239
SUFFOLK
  CITY
23240 18964 4276 54.25% 44.27% 5281
SURRY
  COUNTY
2507 1779 728 57.62% 40.89% 963
SUSSEX
  COUNTY
3195 2146 1049 58.93% 39.58% 1275
TAZEWELL
  COUNTY
4931 12858 -7928 27.30% 71.21% -5605
VIRGINIA
  BEACH CITY
98327 111190 -12863 46.23% 52.28% -1434
WARREN
  COUNTY
7047 10326 -3278 39.96% 58.55% -1882
WASHINGTON
  COUNTY
7559 18460 -10901 28.62% 69.89% -8014
WAYNESBORO
  CITY
3779 5250 -1471 41.23% 57.28% -909
WESTMORELAND
  COUNTY
4543 4143 400 51.52% 46.99% 858
WILLIAMSBURG
  CITY
5729 3307 2422 62.46% 36.05% 1975
WINCHESTER
  CITY
5169 5053 117 49.82% 48.69% 543
WISE
  COUNTY
4448 10365 -5917 29.58% 68.93% -3919
WYTHE
  COUNTY
3826 9398 -5572 28.50% 70.01% -4100
YORK
  COUNTY
13293 22323 -9030 36.77% 61.74% -6133
Totals 2036796 1968415 68381 50.10% 48.42% 234527
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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (11+ / 0-)

    Mitt Romney supports abortion rights in the cases of rape, incest, and needin' to get elected in Massachusetts!

    by Twodaiquiris on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 04:36:10 PM PDT

  •  What about Virgil Goode? (5+ / 0-)

    He might pick up a fair number of votes in some areas.

    •  Yes Goode is a wild card. I suspect he might (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      whenwego, AreDeutz

      do well around his home area of Rocky Mount, where I cannot imagine Romney having great popularity.  

      Still they don't like Obama down there either.  I have the statewide number for 3rd party candidates coming in under 2%, but I am trying to think of a data-based way to figure out what Goode's hometown numbers might be and whether that will have an impact.

      Mitt Romney supports abortion rights in the cases of rape, incest, and needin' to get elected in Massachusetts!

      by Twodaiquiris on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 04:49:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sort of in line with recent public polling showing (4+ / 0-)

    an Obama lead of 1-2% (non GOP polls).

    This margin can grow as I think the third debate will remind a lot of Virginians why they had generally supported Obama pre debate season.  Romney really failed to connect with women and also on the CIC readiness question.  I think we can expect a boost of about 2 points to a 4 point margin in public polling (non-GOP).  Then it's all about turnout.

    Alternative rock with something to say: http://www.myspace.com/globalshakedown

    by khyber900 on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 04:41:22 PM PDT

  •  Wrong (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NotGeorgeWill, Twodaiquiris

    You forgot Henrico.  Large ethnic population. Unemployment under the national average (5.6%), and high registration this year.

  •  great work...Virgil Goode and Gary Johnson will (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NotGeorgeWill, Twodaiquiris, Supavash

    Take some votes from Romney. One percent maybe? Two?

    If it's tight, could make the difference.

    •  Maybe two percent of the tally . . . (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Twodaiquiris, AreDeutz

      if the race was not close, I think they'd probably capture more support, but in a close race, some of these 3rd party voters might be less inclined to throw their vote away (or to cast a purely symbolic vote).  I'd be interested to hear thoughts from someone in the 5th district.  Goode from what I recall was fairly popular, even though he lost in 2008.   He pulled in about 140K-150K votes.  I don't think his name ID is very high outside of his district, except with political junkies.  I would be a bit surprised if he pulled more than 10 percent in his old CD.  I know of a couple people in NoVA who are going to vote for Johnson.  He has almost no name ID in the state, but I wouldn't be too surprised to see him top Bob Barr's numbers as the Libertarian candidate in 2008, which were around 11,000.

  •  Seeing Virgil Goode signs in Henrico (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Twodaiquiris

    Richmond paper ran a story about Virgil Goode and how he could affect the race in Virginia. Very positive coverage of him. I've lived in the state for 25 years and Goode is well thought of in the southside/southwest/and even central parts of the state.

    I've seen Goode signs cropping up in Henrico County outside Richmond. Hanover County is next door. Very conservative county except for area around Randolph Macon college and Ashland, where "libs" live as some of my Repub friends say.

  •  Hanover is not a "shift" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AreDeutz

    McCain did very well in Hanover, and Romney will do about the same. Hanover is a mix of very conservative rural natives and newer suburbanites who fled Richmond for better schools and whiter whites on laundry day. Obama didn't stand a chance there in 08, and no one I know from Hanover seems to have had any recent Epiphany towards progressive thought. Its growth has not been that much since last time.
    So why is this a "shift"?

    •  Obama lost big there in 08 but he will lose even (0+ / 0-)

      bigger this time, by about 6,000 votes more.  It is one of the largest shifts in margin.   This is explained in the diary.

      Mitt Romney supports abortion rights in the cases of rape, incest, and needin' to get elected in Massachusetts!

      by Twodaiquiris on Thu Oct 25, 2012 at 03:36:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  chesterfield (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Twodaiquiris

    i live in chesterfield. ive gotta say, its conservative here, a lot of  very religious moms who im afraid have embraced romney. seems like way more romney signs now than mccain signs 4 years ago. i would be surprised to see chesterfield increase too much for obama. sorry to be a downer. i still think we'll win va.

    •  Signs (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AreDeutz, Twodaiquiris

      We're seeing a metric ton of Romney signs in Loudoun too, the thing you gotta remember is that Romney's campaign had more money, earlier, than Obama's. And where the President's campaign spent money on staff, rather than signs, it appears the Romney campaign did the opposite. It's like they said "shit, we have all this money, chum for everyone!"

      I personally believe the OFA investment in staffing, early (there were like a full dozen staff in Loudoun by September), is going to make a big difference.

      Signs don't vote. Oh, a campaign shouldn't lose a sign war, it can discourage your supporters, but you don't have to win one. You just need to not get blown out in the sign war.

      IMHO.

      Progress is a continuum, not a light switch. Visit Leesburg Tomorrow and Loudoun Progress.

      by Paradox13 on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 06:44:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  optics+ (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Twodaiquiris

        i agree signs dont vote, but the optics are bad. and just knowing this area after living here a lifetime, it's pretty clear to me that there are a lot of suburban moms that are ok, or even happy, with romney. many families who have never participated in the sign wars are in this year for romney. even somewhat educated folks i know buy into some of the crazy obama memes. it's disheartening. but i still think the ground game and the fact that kaine is running will help us carry the day.obama has some great radio ads here, too. im a voter protection advocate so i will hopefully get a sense early on election day of how this election compares to the last. honestly, i cant bear another 2004.

    •  This is expected. I have Obama losing there by (0+ / 0-)

      over 21k.  The pressure is on Romney to get out his voters.

      Mitt Romney supports abortion rights in the cases of rape, incest, and needin' to get elected in Massachusetts!

      by Twodaiquiris on Thu Oct 25, 2012 at 03:37:58 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Good analysis, and I agree (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ncps

    Great analysis, and incidentally, I agree with your projection for Loudoun. It is a major nailbiter, but I feel like we're making the better voter contacts, and I know we're likely ahead in the absentee in person voting (Virginia doesn't have "early" voting). That being said, I feel like the Romney campaign is stronger here than the McCain Campaign was in '08, largely because of the massive Republican investment here last year in the local races.

    And, for what it's worth, I'm the Chair of the Democratic Party here. :) So, while I could be overly optimistic, biased and wrong, it will be from a point of some authority. Thus, qualifying me for national TV pundit status!

    Progress is a continuum, not a light switch. Visit Leesburg Tomorrow and Loudoun Progress.

    by Paradox13 on Wed Oct 24, 2012 at 06:41:29 PM PDT

  •  Live in Albemarle, work in Cville. (0+ / 0-)

    Not a lot of Obama signs, more Romney ones than I'd like. But lots and lots of Obama bumper stickers, and not nearly as many Romney ones. There is one large Romney sign on 250 West that keeps getting defaced. They're on the third one.

    My two sons were 17 and 14 in 2008. Since they are living at school they have already voted. So that makes two new votes for Obama this time!

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