Washoe Friday (Oct 26) Early Vote, Democrats Cast 21 More Ballots

Give both sides credit for consistency, they are battling it out neck and neck in the early vote in Washoe County. For the second straight day the vote differential was essentially even with Democrats again nosing ahead by a handful of votes.  On the day Democrats cast 2218 ballots and Republicans cast 2197 ballots, 99% of the Democrats total. There was a -35% drop-off from Thursday in the aggregate vote which did not occur in 2008 so I’m wondering if there was a local event or holiday that decreased the turnout.  First snow day in Tahoe?  Free garlic fries at Pluto’s? Where’d everybody go?    The differential between Democrats and Republicans obviously remains about even but the Independent/Other category remains on the march up another 0.2pp.  With each passing day the Independent vote increases in importance especially with Romney racking up gaudy margins among this group around the country.

With even results little changes in the overall picture.  I’ll probably apply some major tweaks to the model over the weekend to more accurately reflect this year’s turnout ahead of next week’s ramp-up into the end of early voting. The aggregate differential is 1040 versus 1019 yesterday and -6900 less than the 7940 differential at the same point 4 years ago.


  1. fab4gal
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 10:51 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Statistically speaking, does early voting increase sharply when it’s about to end? Or does it start off high and slowly taper off to the end?

  2. DAO(Doctor Against Obama)
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 10:54 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Great job on keeping up with these numbers.
    I voted early in Georgia, waited two hours on Monday after lunch.

  3. Yong
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 10:59 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I hope there are a lot of Democrats in Nevada that will vote for Romney.

  4. Brian
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 11:08 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I suspect it will be time to kiss Nevada goodbye, soon.

    I guess those poor bastards enjoy 12% unemployment and the highest rate of foreclosure in America, or something.

  5. ET4
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 11:19 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Hi Keith,

    Just wanted to let you know that I’ve been a long time lurker of your awesome site. Living in the liberal bastion of Los Angeles as I do, it can be a little dismaying having to see Obama bumper stickers everywhere I drive. Your site has helped keep me sane this election season (especially the dark days of September) by cutting through the trash that pollsters have put out this year. Ben Smith called Silver’s silly model “the bulwark against all out Dem-panic.” I think you and Josh Jordan (numbersmuncher) have been the Nate Silver of the Right, without the ridiculously illogical weighting of polls, of course. Please keep up the great work. I really appreciate it.

    • Posted October 26, 2012 at 11:37 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Thank you for the compliments. I appreciate everyone who stops by the site and genuinely can’t beleive it’s as popular as it is. I can’t keep up with the comments like I used to but I always appreciate people like yourself letting me know my labors aren’t in vain.

      • Brian
        Posted October 26, 2012 at 11:40 pm | Permalink

        My only question is what happens after the election? lol…Are you going to close up shop until 2016, or keep the lights on to cover competitive Senate races in 2014 or something like that?

  6. billyboy
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 11:35 pm | Permalink | Reply

    today was Nevada Day, a state holiday. Dont kiss us off yet much more energy on the reps side

  7. Brad
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 11:39 pm | Permalink | Reply

    NV is pretty much gone unless we see a stiff reversal. The projected gap is just going to be too wide via Clark to be overcome by the rest of the state…unless Indies break something like 4to 1 against the President.

  8. edyang
    Posted October 26, 2012 at 11:51 pm | Permalink | Reply


    Another long time lurker here. Found your site a couple weeks ago and haven’t looked back. Stellar analysis second to none. Thanks for keeping it real. We’ll all celebrate together come Nov 7.

    Ed Yang

  9. Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:00 am | Permalink | Reply

    Did I read right that Romney was moving staffers out of NV?

    That would be a strange call since the polls are close and early voting, while not amazing, isn’t terrible for the GOP.

    does he have bigger fish to fry than 6 EV or what?

    • Brian
      Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:08 am | Permalink | Reply

      Well the “polls are close” in Virginia and Florida too, but the Obama campaign sees the writing on the wall in those states; probably similar feelings in the Romney camp for Nevada. That and the early voting pretty much *had* to be amazing for the GOP in Nevada, but it appears to be leveling out in Washoe, which means game over, since the Clark County margin will be enormous thanks to the “GOP” in Clark backstabbing Romney and Heller.

      If Romney is moving assets out of Nevada and putting them in Iowa/Wisconsin/Ohio, I’m all for it.

      • Michel Daoud
        Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:25 am | Permalink

        “If Romney is moving assets out of Nevada and putting them in Iowa/Wisconsin/Ohio, I’m all for it.”

        Same here. Nevada was never going to be easy, and has been trending more D over the years. The opposite can be said for Wisconsin and Ohio. Just in case Romney loses Ohio, he needs to have an alternate route to 270 in place, and I firmly believe Wisconsin+Colorado+New Hampshire is by far the best way to go.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:17 am | Permalink

        “Same here. Nevada was never going to be easy, and has been trending more D over the years”

        Yes… and no. In the late ’90’s and early ’00’s, the GOP closed a long standing registration gap and in ’02 won every statewide office, after picking up a Dem seat in the dismal 2000 Senate elections. The Dems massively increased their registration in ’08, but that dropped off in 2010, where, despite Reid winning (due in large part to a horrible GOP caniddate), Sandoval beat Reid’s son by double digits AND the GOP won more votes in the assembly than the Democrats. The Dem registration lead dropped to its lowest point where the GOP primary had more voters than the Dem primary… even in Clark County.

        But, as mentioned, In April/May, the Ron Paul cultists took over the state and county parties, with their leaders openly wishing for Romney and Heller’s defeat.

        If there is a concerted effort to bring down Reid’s political machine AND the Ron Paul cultists are replaced with competent & sane individuals, Nevada can be saved for the GOP.

      • Brian
        Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:25 am | Permalink

        How exactly did that happen, anyway? Who fell asleep at the wheel to allow freaking Paulbots to take over crucial positions in a damn swing state?

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:38 am | Permalink

        The Ron Paul people took over for a few reasons. The first is that the previous Clark County GOP was underwhelming and coasting on past success.

        The second is the way central committees are elected: Delegates to the county convention are chosen as the caucuses held every two years; since most spots aren’t filled, all the Ron Paul people volunteered and got around half of the delegates; at the county convention, they created chaos and literally drove away non Ron Paul supporters and won the county and the delegates to the state convention’ with 60% of the GOP vote being in Clark County, they took over the state convention; basically, the way the central committees are chosen are TOO democratic and allows an organized minority to take total control.

        The third reason is that GOP elected officials have general washed their hands of the Central Committees

  10. Prescient11
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:10 am | Permalink | Reply

    Hey, I can comment here! Looking at Ras party ID is instructive. He has never, and I mean never, undershot R turnout. He’s looking at around R 3+ minimum. Food for thought.

    Keith, this is a great website and thanks for all your hardwork. Can’t wait to see Clark results when those mobile sites move closer to GOP territory!

  11. Mike
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:25 am | Permalink | Reply

    AussieMarcus, relax that is lie that some of the liberals pundits want us to believe…….Mit is still figthing for Nevada…..

  12. MikeN
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:29 am | Permalink | Reply

    Why build a model for such a short time frame, when there is so much volatility. Just comparing to 2008 levels should be enough.

  13. Mike
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:31 am | Permalink | Reply

    Oooops sorry guys too much coffee, I meant to say Mitt and fighting………lol…lol…..

  14. Pete
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:44 am | Permalink | Reply

    While Mitt has an unsung advantage in NV in the Mormon vote, I hope he can overcome the margin of fraud given the SEIU involvement in the process there.

    • Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:00 am | Permalink | Reply

      Richard L. Trumka, the President of the AFL-CIO was at the early polling location set up specificially for the union workers on the Vegas Strip hotels.

      • petep
        Posted October 27, 2012 at 4:44 am | Permalink

        As Keith has noted, Clark County moves some of the early vote locations around, with most of the goody locations in Dem areas, including the hotels…. I suspect the numbers well change as locations move to the more Rep areas.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        FYI, the Early vote station on the Vegas Strip site is one of the permanent sites.

  15. Bryan
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:02 am | Permalink | Reply

    I hope everyone saw Michael Barone predict a Romney victory on Hannity tonight. He knows this country, state by state, county by county, precinct by precinct, better than any person alive. That’s a positive sign. He also seemed to say that the OH polls are understating Romney’s support in the state, which has been my sense based on the early voting and the sampling, as pointed out here on BW.

  16. Jan
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:05 am | Permalink | Reply

    Nevada is a clearly one of the more difficult states that have been labeled battleground, but i’m not that pessimistic even though Washoe seems a bit lagging behind.
    -Reps are still cutting away at the Dem lead;
    -The argument has been made that the dems are cannabalizing their high-propensity vote while the reps are scoring votes from less loyal voters (for the argument see: http://www.gop.com/general/weekend-messaging-memo-momentum/ )
    -There are polls showing Romney has a good edge on indies, which has been a substantial portion of the early vote till now
    -Wouldn’t it make sense that a number of people who would normally identify themselves as Rep would choose amidst of a fight within the state GOP to rather register as indies in order to disconnect themselves somewhat from the whole issue? They would still favor Romney over Obama;

    In the end it is still an uphill battle, but aren’t pulling those off even sweeter? I don’t think competing in Nevada keeps Romney from competing elsewhere given the cash on hand. The whole pulling out thing has already been debunked.

    • fab4gal
      Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:16 am | Permalink | Reply

      Jan, regarding your last point: My mother has voted Republican every single election since 1980. However she always registers as an independent, I think it’s a sort of “you can’t label me, I’m unique” attitude. But again, she has voted 100% Republican down every ballot since 1980. I strongly believe there are a lot like her who are very clearly Republican or Democrat but for whatever reason don’t want to register as such.

      • petep
        Posted October 27, 2012 at 4:39 am | Permalink

        My father is very similar. He had always registered as a Dem, but last voted for a Dem candidate in 1960. He will never change party.

      • displacedRhodeIslandConservative
        Posted October 27, 2012 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

        Yep same here, my Dad is independent and has voted straight Republican except for Perot….

  17. Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:07 am | Permalink | Reply

    The Dem advantage in Clark County seems to be a bit over 60% of what they were getting 4 years ago, though participation is up 4/3 of 2008. With Washoe being a wash (pun intended), only good turnout in the rurals can help dent it. If GOP and Dem gets most of their own voters, and independents are split, than Obama will win by mid-single digits, assuming that turn-out trends are otherwise similar to 2008.

    There is still a reason to fight here: Sen. Dean Heller. He has been running 4-6 points ahead of Romney. If the GOP can close it up enough then Heller can hang on. If not, then the Dems will add Nevada to their Senate pick-up(s) of Maine, and maybe Massachusetts. With three down, the GOP will need to lock in six pick-ups from Democrats just to get to 50 votes.

  18. nvClark
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:11 am | Permalink | Reply

    Clark numbers are out and it was good day.

  19. nvClark
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:34 am | Permalink | Reply

    Well I’m sure the numbers will keep until morning but if you peek at them yourself before you go to sleep I think you’ll have something to smile about while you drift off. 🙂 Looking forward to your analysis, thanks for all the great info. For my two cents worth you’re far better than nate silver.

  20. Paul8148
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 1:35 am | Permalink | Reply

    Dems 13857, Republicans over 10100

  21. Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:02 am | Permalink | Reply

    If Obama wins, as all the poll based aggregators are predicting, including RCP, will you recognize you were completely wrong?

    • fab4gal
      Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:05 am | Permalink | Reply

      You mean the polls that claim Democrats are going to turn out in bigger numbers than they did in 2008? Hey, is the sky orange, too?

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:07 am | Permalink

        Yes or no, if the polls turn out to be right, will you recognize all that’s been written here about polls was wrong?

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:48 am | Permalink

        Peter are you having a bad night? I expect better from you. I hope tomorrow’s a good day for you.

      • fab4gal
        Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:10 am | Permalink

        We talk facts and statistics here, so if you’d like to actually offer some to support your opinion that we’re “completely wrong,” then I would respect it. We’ve proven with real numbers that the polls are wrong because they are assuming a huge Democratic turn out that even Democrats admit will not happen. I’m not biting at your attempt to start a fight, sorry.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:15 am | Permalink

        Very simple. If Obama wins there’s nothing to debate, the polls will have been proven write and this blog proven wrong. Will you recognize that?

    • jp
      Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:36 am | Permalink | Reply

      you must be kidding?

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:37 am | Permalink

        Kidding about what?

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:49 am | Permalink

        That’s enough pulling hair Peter. You’re offering nothing except antagonism. Do better.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 2:58 am | Permalink

        Keith, I have a simple question. Every single poll based model, including those by conservatives, have Obama winning the EC. The RCP No Toss Up map (which is simply the latest average of state polls) has Obama at 290 EC votes. So if Obama wins all these polls will be proven right, despite everything written in this blog. Will you guys accept that? I’ve already said that if the polls have Obama winning on Election Day and he loses I will recognize there are real problems with the polls.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 3:09 am | Permalink

        It’s not as easy at that Peter. My critiques are not that Obama is winning in any specific poll, it’s that the internals in the poll make no sense. Today’s ARG poll is a prime example with Romney winning Independents in Nevada by 35-points and Obama leading by 2. Even if Obama wins Nevada by 2 my critique of the poll stands. that is of course unless Romney really does pull Independents by a 35% margin and loses which I think is impossible. If that occurs, of course I’ll admit I was wrong. My other critiques are on party ID where the polls show Obama’s turnout advantage at or greater than his 2008 level. I fundamentally disagree that he will be able to replicate that turnout (for many reasons outlined in this blog) and therefore criticize those polls. If Obama achieves a turnout like he did in 2008, I will readily admit I was wrong and give him full marks for achieving something that every statistical measure (enthusiasm, voter registration, etc) say he should not be able to achieve. I actually have no problem admitting I am wrong when I’m wrong. But you are over-simplifying my critiques as simply critiques based on who is leading. Just the other day I took to task a poll Romney was leading because it said Romney had 22% support from African-Americans. That’s not going to happen. So you’re question is an unreasonable question because it attempts to invalidate reasonable critiques by wrapping it in an outcome that may be wholly unrelated to those critiques.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 3:09 am | Permalink

        BTW it’s 3am for me so I’m out of here soon …

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 3:19 am | Permalink

        Here’s another lengthy example on which the entire election rests in my opinion. It is the difference between what I believe will be the racial make-up of the electorate and what David Axelrod thinks will be the electorate. I was going to turn this into a blog post but whatever, here goes:

        The entire Obama campaign is predicated on an electorate containing a racial makeup highly unlikely to show up on election day. It’s easier to demonstrate on a national level because the Obama campaign has revealed some of their assumption while the state models are private.

        The Census Bureau is the final arbiter of racial make-up of the election. They pour through every ballot and get an accurate read on election statistics for months following election day.

        The real racial breakdown in 2008 according to the Census Bureau was White 76.3%, Blacks 12.1%, Hispanic 7.4%, Asian 2.5%, Other 1.7%
        The CNN exit polls which are used in news stories were: White: 74%, Blacks: 13%, Hispanics 9%, Asians 2%, Other 3%.

        It is rare when the media accurately reports the racial makeup of electorate. They use 2008 CNN exit polls for convenience even though the Census Bureau has the real data.

        When you look at the differences, Whites are underrepresented by 2.3%, Blacks overrepresented by 0.9% and Hispanics over-represented by 1.6%.

        Whites voted Republican (55 – 43) in the last election and Blacks voted Democrat (95 to 4) and Hispanics voted Democrat (67 to 31)

        This means if you use the CNN racial make-up in polls you are oversampling Democrat groups and undersampling Republican groups.

        Previously I proved out that 1.7 million white voters (who voted in 2004) did not vote in 2008 meaning the racial breakdown by percent is over-generous to the non-White groups had Republicans mobilized the White voter.

        The increase in the non-White voting population is very real in America so you cannot hold racial demographics stagnant for elections 4 years apart. The problem with team Obama’s assumptions is they have the White vote dropping to 72% this election cycle.

        The White vote as a percent of the overall electorate decreased in each election since 1992:
        1992: -0.3pp
        1996: -2.1pp
        2000: -1.8pp
        2004: -1.5pp
        2008: -2.9pp

        You can see the big jump in 2008. That was a two-fold move. Understandably non-whites were enthusaistic about a non-White candidate and per the link above 1.7 million White voters stayed home.

        Today every poll says White voters are enthusiastic about the election and there is a decided drop-off of enthusiasm from 2008 among non-white voters.

        But David Axelrod and his media allies keep peddling polls with the White vote as 72% of the electorate, a -4.3pp drop from 2008 if we ignore the missing 1.7 million white voters who did not vote in 2008 but may be highly motivated in 2012. It simply is not going to happen.

        I would expect the racial makeup in 2021 to be Whites 75%, Blacks 11%, Hispanics 8%, Asians 4%, Other 1.5% — note Asians are the fastest growing major ethic group in the US.

        Axelrod is talking his book when every ounce of data says he blowing smoke.

        If Axelrod is right on the racial make-up of the electorate, Obama probably wins re-election. Under that circumstance, again, I will readily admit I was wrong.

        But an Obama win does not invalidate the countless criticisms levied and argued persuasively with mountains of data throughout this blog.

      • nvClark
        Posted October 27, 2012 at 3:15 am | Permalink

        Why would it be important for Keith or the comment participants here to admit any such thing? Do you think that if Obama wins we should all line up and post grovelling apologies to you for having opinions that dare to challenge the media/polling narrative? But even if it was somehow important for anyone here to admit they were wrong the question then becomes “wrong about what?”… I haven’t personally seen anywhere on this blog where the Keith has made anything like a categorical or official determination that either candidate is definitely going to win. Certainly nothing like Nate Silver’s prediction, which currently stands at a whopping 75% chance of Obama winning the election. To me the question is not whether Keith and/or the comment participants of this blog will recant their personal opinions and admit they were “completely wrong” if Obama wins as you suggest, but rather whether Nate Silver will admit he was wrong if Romney does, and to what extent his reputation as an infallible prognosticator will be tarnished.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 3:23 am | Permalink


        But we’ve been through this. Analysis by Party ID makes no sense. Ras himself has said you can’t compare party ID by pollster. And if former Rs start calling themselves Is, say Tea Party, that right there explains the numbers.

        The point is that this happens every single election, the losing side comes up with all kinds of rationales as to why the polls are wrong and then come Election Day the polls turn out to be right. Every single election.

        Sean Trende from RCP admits that Obama is the favorite today because that’s what the RCP averages show. It’s not just 538. There are quite a few other poll aggregators and they all agree.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 3:37 am | Permalink

        Sean’s a pessimistic. I’ve been fortunate enough to get to know him a bit and we have consistently disagreed on Romney’s and Obama’s prospects. The issue with party ID is when the composition of the surveyed group bears no resemblance to the state you’re polling how can anyone argue the poll is valid? My critique of polling firms on party ID is they don’t have a fair representation of state X and pass the poll off as a fair assessment of who is leading in a race. Coincidentally Sean and I fight over this issue all the time. He’s in your camp on party ID and I disagree vehemently with his position. Sea had a tweet within the last 48 hours where he admitted the polls are so “off” this election that if Romney really wins decisively, he’s change his view on the party ID debate. But that’s why they run the race. We’ll know who is right and why on election night. Until then we’ll just have to enjoy the sparring.

      • Posted October 27, 2012 at 3:47 am | Permalink

        It’s very simple Peter

        If Romney continues to lead by 2-4 pts then he wins the EC. Simple.

        Clinging to the ghosts of 2000 when the difference was only a fraction of a percent has no bearing when Romney appears to be solidifying a consistent 2-4 pt split.

  22. Commonsenseobserver
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 7:23 am | Permalink | Reply

    Perhaps Peter Palco might realise that we say nothing, except that Romney definitely has a decent chance of winning. You cannot deny that, whatever the masters in Mordor and Minas Morgul, uh, D.C. and Chicago, say. What happens on Nov 6 is something no one knows.

    Which is why, of course, you say “if”. Now run along and find the sun, or just go through Moria. I’d warn you, though, that Isengard’s about to be destroyed.

    One does not simply walk into Mordor…

  23. sr
    Posted October 27, 2012 at 12:07 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I can categorically state that I have seen many websites and Keith’s analysis is one of the best–based on hard numbers, not presumptions. So Peter, go look at some of the other sites if it makes you feel better.

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