Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Michigan Republicans did not lose 62% of Partisan Races

The claim that Michigan Republicans lost 62% of all partisan races appeared here and here on RightMichigan.
As Todd Courser has pointed out, in spite of having a candidate in every single partisan race on the November ballot, at every level (federal, state, county, and local) -- something that the MDP was unable to accomplish -- in spite of that, and the oodles of money spent, the MIGOP still lost 62% of all partisan races in the November 2012 election.
This didn't sound right to me, so I started adding up the numbers.

Office: R/D
Statewide: 0/10
Congress: 9/5
State House: 59/51
Countywide offices: 342/145/1 (70% Republicans)
County Commissioners: 379/201/4 (65% Republicans)

There are a few counties where I couldn't find data.  They are Lake, Osceola, Montmorency, Presque Isle, Menominee, Baraga, Iron for countywide officers and Lake, Osceola, Montmorency, Menominee, Iron, Ontonagon for county commissioners.  If anyone has data on the partisan composition of the elected officials in the missing counties, please let me know.

Now, there's no way that I'm going to look up data for all of Michigan's 1240 townships, but they should be even more Republican than the county commissioners.  That's because democrats tend to concentrate in the cities, which have non-partisan elections, while Republicans are more likely to live in rural and suburban areas.  For example, in Kalamazoo County, which is swingy overall, there are 77 Republican and 18 democrat township officials.

My guesstimate would be that Republicans won about 70% of partisan elections in Michigan in 2012.

Now, whether this is a meaningful statistic is another question.  The jurisdictions that Republicans won would tend to be smaller than those won by democrats since townships are more rural.  The fact that cities have nonpartisan elections also skews the numbers.

Still, the "62% democrats" statistic is clearly false.

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