NPR did this cool graphic looking at the voting map and showing how it looks in terms of the amount of money spent in each state for 2012 election.
Check it out: Map Morphed by Money
“Despite the stagnant economy and broad dissatisfaction with national conditions, Barack Obama holds a significant lead over Mitt Romney. Currently, Obama is favored by a 50% to 43% margin among registered voters nationwide. Obama has led by at least a slim margin in every poll this year, and there is no clear trend in either candidate’s support since Romney wrapped up the GOP nomination.
The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted June 28-July 9, 2012 among 2,973 adults, including 2,373 registered voters, finds that Romney has not seized the advantage as the candidate best able to improve the economy. In fact, he has lost ground on this issue over the past month.”
See Story: PEW July 2012 Poll
For political junkies, there are several websites that provide useful data.
One is a site that tracks voter participation. The percent of eligible voters who are actually participating in primaries is rarely reported in the news stories. Some wins are just not representative of many voters.
It can be found at: U.S. Elections Project
It is maintained by Dr. Michael McDonald, an Associate Professor at George Mason University. This is a great public service. Thank you! He also provides participation tables on primaries and general elections for even years from 2000-2010. With this data, you can determine whether voter participation is different in 2012 than in prior years, if you are looking for a research project.
You would need to look at other sources to find out who won those primaries though. The NY Times provides a table of the delegate counts, which shows who won. Another interesting research project is to try and determine whether there is anything about the percent of voter turnout and who wins. Continue reading
The Washington Post listed some of what was purchased with the $4 billion spent on the 2010 elections:
Candidates spent at least $50 million on catering and liquor, $3.2 million at country clubs and golf courses, and $500,000 on pizza, coffee and doughnuts.
Plus, $2.5 billion for ads and media handlers.
And lattes all around: Democrats spent at least $24,000 and Republicans spent at least $17,000 at Starbucks.
Meg Whitman, who spent at least $140 million of her own money in her losing bid to become California’s governor–paid $109 million to Smart Media Group of Alexandria to handle her broadcast advertising campaign, $4.5 million to compaign adviser Scott Howell, and $1.1 million to GOP strategist Mike Murphy.
The joy of simple descriptive statistics!
Washington Post story: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/11/07/AR2010110703929.html
According to Open Secrets (http://www.opensecrets.org/news/2010/10/election-2010-to-shatter-spending-r.html), the Center for Responsive Politics conservatively estimates that “the current election cycle will cost $3.7 billion, reaffirming an initial cost-of-election prediction from earlier this year. The Center now forecasts, however, that final spending numbers for the full cycle will likely flirt with the $4 billion mark.