Sunday, December 18, 2016
Who to Thank for Clinton's Popular Vote Victory
I've seen a number of news stories the last few days that suggest that most of the recounting of votes is done for the Presidential election. So, this is perhaps a good time to take a look at the results. Clinton won the popular vote handily with 65,844,610 votes to Trump's 62,979,636. That gives Clinton a popular vote lead of 2,864,974 votes*. Trump, on the other hand won the Electoral College, even more handily, 306 to 232. When this happens -- when the popular vote goes one way and the Electoral College the other -- that generally means that whichever candidate who won the popular vote will have won by large margins in a few states, while the other candidate, the one who won the Electoral College, will have won by narrower margins in a larger number of states. So, here's my question: Which states did Clinton's popular vote advantage come from? Or, to put it another way, if we start with state that gave the most net votes to Clinton and work down, how many states would we have to drop from the total before Trump won the popular vote in the remaining states? I've drawn a map.
Enough states to explain Clinton's popular vote lead.
Yes, Just California.
Clinton received 8,753,788 votes in California, compared to Trump's 4,483,810, for a California popular vote advantage of 4,269,978 votes. So, of Clinton's 2,864,974 popular vote advantage nationwide, 149% comes from California. Trump won the rest of the country.
So, how many counties in California would we have to drop to cancel Clinton's lead in the national vote? That is, if we start with the whole US and just drop out counties in California, how many would we have to drop to make Trump win the election? I have another map.
Enough counties in California to explain Clinton's popular vote lead.
That would be five. Basically LA and the greater San Francisco area. Between LA, Alameda, Santa Clara, San Francisco, and San Mateo counties Clinton received 2,967,748 more votes than Trump. These five large-population California counties explain Clinton's popular vote lead nationwide.
*Numbers from Wikipedia, just now.