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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Deep South Primaries

On Tuesday Mississippi, Alabama, and Hawaii had GOP Presidential contests (American Samoa too).  The above map shows the previous results by county with Santorum in green, Romney in blue, Gingrich in red, and Ron Paul (in the states that have voted so far) in white.  All of the attention is focused on Mississippi and Alabama. Media attention was focused on Mississippi and Alabama because they're more populous and they're results are available in prime-time for TV. Santorum won both in close votes which is his first outside of the midwest.  The CNN exit poll showed that in both states he won those with at least some college (but within the margin of error of +/-2.5% to Gingrich so they are statistically tied) or a Bachelor's degree, Gingrich won with those with those with those who never attended college and won with those with post graduate degrees.  The table for Alabama is given below with candidate differences outside the margin of error highlighted in bold.
Vote by Education (total %)


Never Attended College
(21%)
33%
4%
27%
32%


Some College
(35%)
32%
6%
26%
34%


College Graduates
(26%)
25%
4%
31%
40%


Postgraduate Study
(18%)
25%
6%
35%
31%



Two days before the primaries Public Policy Polling came out with a poll which asked detailed questions to likely voters on their positions on which says that 20% in both states think interracial marriage should be illegal and 60% do not believe in Darwin's theory of evolution.  This poll was limited to likely primary voters in both states.  In Alabama about 610,000 (population about 4.8 million including some democrats) people voted (12.7% of the population) and in Mississippi (pop. about 3 million with some democrats too, Obama received 813,479 there in 2008) about 290,000 did (9.6% of the population while 554,662 Mississippians voted for Obama in 2008).  It may be unfair to generalize these results in these states beyond those who participated in the primaries.

Coming up are primaries and caucuses in Louisiana, Puerto Rico (won by Romney), Missouri, and Illinois (Romney).  Stephen Colbert brought in an expert to discuss these upcoming contests.