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Monday, October 10, 2016

Change in Facebook Followings for PA Candidates Before and After the Debate

Trump Followers on PA Facebook Page
I had originally planned to do a post looking at Facebook pages for candidates for Pennsylvania but recent events in the campaign have forced me to update the numbers I collected on Friday before the nasty video and debate occurred.  Above is a graph showing the number of new followers for Trump's PA state page.  The dark line shows the new followers during the past week while the light colored line shows the same for the previous week.  There was a spike in new followers for Trump in PA yesterday, the day of the debate.  The graph below shows the trend in new followers in the PA for Hillary page.   It shows that her PA page had a large increase in followers in the first part of last week and then tapering off on the day of the debate.  The problem with both graphs is that there is no x-axis to give some idea of the number of new followers for each day.  Luckily I have created the tables below for comparison of the different candidate PA pages.  I have also created tables for the PA Senate race and some local down ballot Congressional and state legislature races.

Clinton Followers on PA Facebook Page


Candidate
RCP % Avg PA
FB Followers Pre Debate
FB engaged pre deb
% Engaged pre deb
FB Followers Post Debate
Net gain Post Deb
% Chg in Followers
FB Engaged Post Deb
% Engaged Post Deb
Clinton (D)
47.8
     10,639
   4,417
41.52
     10,924
285
2.68
      2,929
26.81
Trump (R)
39.2
     13,009
       305
2.34
     13,062
53
0.41
179
1.37
Johnson (L)
5
           724
         38
5.25
           731
7
0.97
14
1.92
Stein (G)
2
           487
         30
6.16
           493
6
1.23
13
2.64
correlation with RCP
0.95
0.73
0.63
0.96
0.80
0.40
0.73
0.67
 

The above table shows their Real Clear Politics (RCP) polling averages (for Monday), the number in Facebook followers for the state pages for the four Presidential candidates (pre (Fri) and post (Mon) tape/debate), the number engaged pre and post Debate, the % engaged (the # engaged/#followers as a measure of enthusiasm), and the net and % change in followers after the debate. The last row shows the correlation coefficient for each measure with the RCP polling average.

The table shows the largest gain in followers after the debate (both in number and %) for Clinton and the highest number engaged (both in number and %) among the four candidates in PA.  Of all the measures, the number of followers (both pre and post) is most highly correlated with the RCP average.  As he did nationally, Trump still has more overall followers in PA but the higher engagement and change in followers for Clinton suggest more enthusiasm for her on Facebook.

US Senate
RCP
Avg 
PA
FB 
Followers
Pre 
Debate
FB 
engaged
pre 
Deb
Engaged
pre 
Deb
FB
Followers
Post
Deb
Net 
gain
Post 
Deb
% Chg 
in
Followers
FB 
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Pat Toomey (R)
43.4
    152,198
     6,230
4.09
     152,597
399
0.26
       2,831
1.86
Katie McGinty (D)
43.8
      21,367
     1,770
8.28
       21,541
174
0.81
      1,140
5.29
 

This table looks at the Facebook pages for the US. Senate candidates Pat Toomey and Katie McGinty.  The RCP average has them only 0.4% apart but Toomey has a decisive advantage in the number of followers.  Both candidates had less than a 1% change in their followers over the weekend.  McGinty did have a higher % engaged both pre and post debate.  It's not possible to compute correlation coefficients with just two data points.

US House 
12th
FB 
Followers
Pre 
Debate
FB 
engaged
pre deb
Engaged
pre deb
FB
Followers
Post
Debate
Net 
gain
Post 
Deb
% Chg in
Followers
FB 
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Keith 
Rothfus (R)
        12,718
              94
0.74
       12,726
8
0.06
57
0.45
Erin
McClelland (D)
          3,492
            198
5.67
          3,503
11
0.32
123
3.51
 

In congressional races there is little public polling but we may look at their Facebook followings as a gage of support.  In the PA House 12th congressional district incumbent Keith Rothfus has almost 3 times as many followers on Facebook (pre and post debate) but McClelland has a higher engagement in terms of number and %.

US House 
9th
FB 
Followers
Pre 
Debate
FB 
engaged
pre deb
Engaged
pre deb
FB
Followers
Post
Debate
Net 
gain
Post 
Deb
% Chg in
Followers
FB 
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Bill Shuster 
(R)
        6,168
           640
10.38
            6,188
20
0.32
235
3.80
Art Halvorson 
(D)
         2,200
           136
6.18
         2,204
4
0.18
62
2.81
 

The PA 9th Congressional District race has incumbent Bill Shuster running against Art Halvorson.  Halvorson challenged Shuster in the Republican primary and narrowly lost 52% to 48% but, as luck would have it, he received the most write in votes in the Democratic primary and is now running to become the first tea party democrat in Congress.  The table above shows more followers and more engagement for Shuster.

State Senate 
35th
FB 
Followers
Pre 
Debate
FB 
engaged
pre deb
Engaged
pre deb
FB
Followers
Post
Debate
Net 
gain
Post
 Deb
% Chg in
Followers
FB 
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Wayne
Langerholc (R)
           1,472
    327
22.21
       1,476
4
0.27
124
8.40
Ed Cernic (D)
            347
           105
30.26
         352
5
1.44
77
21.88
 

Looking at the State Senate race in the 35th district, Republican Wayne Langerholc has an advantage in followers and engaged pre and post debate.  Ed Cernic has an advantage in the % engaged pre and post debate.  There is no incumbent in this race.

State Senate
41st
FB 
Followers
Pre 
Debate
FB 
engaged
pre deb
Engaged
pre deb
FB
Followers
Post
Debate
Net 
gain
Post 
Deb
% Chg in
Followers
FB 
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Don White (R)
            957
      4
0.42
957
0
0.00
4
0.42
Tony DeLoreto 
(D)
            535
             37
6.92
        546
11
2.06
29
5.31
 

In the PA State Senate 41st district, incumbent Don White has an advantage in the number of followers but no change relative to the debate.  Challenger Tony DeLoreto has an advantage in the gain in followers and the number engaged with his page.  

State House 
71st
FB 
Followers
Pre 
Debate
FB 
engaged
pre deb
Engaged
pre deb
FB
Followers
Post
Debate
Net 
gain
Post 
Deb
% Chg in
Followers
FB 
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Mark Amsdell (R)
              148
                  4
2.70
         151
3
2.03
1
0.66
Bryan Barbin (D)
              404
                 6
1.49
         404
0
0.00
6
1.49
  

In the 71st state house district (where I live) incumbent Bryan Barbin has an advantage in the number of followers and the number engaged but no increase from Friday to Monday. 

State House 72nd
FB Followers
Pre Debate
FB 
engaged
pre deb
% Engaged
pre deb
FB
Followers
Post
Debate
Net gain
Post Deb
% Chg in
Followers
FB 
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Cecelia Houser (R)
          445
          5
1.12
             448
3
0.67
3
0.67
Frank Burns (D)
       1,250
             90
7.20
          1,251
1
0.08
38
3.04
 

Incumbent Frank Burns (D) has an advantage in the 72nd district in the number of followers and in the number and % engaged with little change in the number of followers for either candidate. 

State House 73rd
FB Followers
Pre Debate
FB engaged
pre deb
% Engaged
pre deb
FB
Followers
Post
Debate
Net gain
Post Deb
% Chg in
Followers
FB 
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Engaged
Post 
Deb
Tommy Sankey (R)
                587
                15
2.56
          587
0
0.00
2
0.34
Fred Weaver (D)
                625
              117
18.72
           627
2
0.32
19
3.03
 

In the last race I am considering, the 73rd district in the PA State House, challenger Fred Weaver has an advantage over incumbent Tommy Sankey in the number of Facebook followers, the number and % engaged, and in the net gain in followers.  Does this mean that this could be the upset special in the area?  Time will tell.

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