Vote Importance

2008 Lenny Domnitser

Data is current as of 21:39 EST, 6 November 2008. I will update this page when the final results come in.

The Table - Badges

What Do the Caclulations Mean?

The presidential election system in the United States does not treat every vote equally.

These calculations do not reflect the influence of a state—they reflect the influence of an individual in that state. The final column, "# Votes" is how many votes each voter counts for, compared to the average. In a popular vote, this would be 1 for everyone; in our system it ranges from 0.39 (D.C.) to 2.28 (Alaska). The average state (closest to 1.0) is Arkansas. My vote in New York counted for 0.74 average votes.

Methodology

If you think my methodology is wrong, please email me with a fix, but I think it is sound.

2008 Election

In case it was not obvious, the data and calculations are for the 2008 U.S. presidential race.

Voting Population

For a voting population I only used Obama or McCain voters (Sum O/M Voters). Because of our 2-party system, a vote for a third-party candidate is counted as a discarded vote. In other words, if you cast a ballot for one of the major candidates, you got "# Votes" votes, but if you voted for a third-party candidate, you got 0.

Preliminary Calculations

VPE is Voters per Elector. Scaled EPV is Electors per Voter, then linearly scaled so that the highest Scaled EPV is 1.

Margin is the absolute difference between Obama and McCain votes. % Margin is a percentage of total counted voters.

Battle Size is the number of voters who mattered. For a state that assigns electors to both candidates it is equal to the sum of Obama and McCain voters. The 2008 election had no such cases, so for the case where all electors go to a single candidate, it is the equal to the number of votes counted minus the margin. The logic for this is that if you take away a vote from the margin, the outcome is the same, but without the margin, a single vote changes the outcome. % Battlers gives the percentage of voters that count. Note that % Battlers + % Margin = 1.

Result Calculations

The preliminary calculations gave 2 unfairness measures:

I took the product of these 2 measures as an importance score. Finally, Importance is linearly scaled so that the average is 1, giving "# Votes".

The Table

State Obama Voters McCain Voters Obama Electors McCain Electors Sum O/M Voters VPE Scaled EPV Margin % Margin Battle Size % Battlers Importance "# Votes"
Alabama 811,510 1,263,741 0 9 2,075,251 230,583.44 0.31 452,231 21.79 1,623,020 78.21 24.50 0.75
Alaska 80,340 136,348 0 3 216,688 72,229.33 1.00 56,008 25.85 160,680 74.15 74.15 2.28
Arizona 850,090 1,012,572 0 10 1,862,662 186,266.20 0.39 162,482 8.72 1,700,180 91.28 35.39 1.09
Arkansas 418,289 633,187 0 6 1,051,476 175,246.00 0.41 214,898 20.44 836,578 79.56 32.79 1.01
California 6,125,805 3,693,865 55 0 9,819,670 178,539.45 0.40 2,431,940 24.77 7,387,730 75.23 30.44 0.94
Colorado 1,179,180 1,005,492 9 0 2,184,672 242,741.33 0.30 173,688 7.95 2,010,984 92.05 27.39 0.84
Connecticut 1,105,693 963,318 7 0 2,069,011 295,573.00 0.24 142,375 6.88 1,926,636 93.12 22.76 0.70
D.C. 210,403 14,821 3 0 225,224 75,074.67 0.96 195,582 86.84 29,642 13.16 12.66 0.39
Delaware 247,386 151,667 3 0 399,053 133,017.67 0.54 95,719 23.99 303,334 76.01 41.28 1.27
Florida 4,093,412 3,904,069 27 0 7,997,481 296,203.00 0.24 189,343 2.37 7,808,138 97.63 23.81 0.73
Georgia 1,811,198 2,022,409 0 15 3,833,607 255,573.80 0.28 211,211 5.51 3,622,396 94.49 26.70 0.82
Hawaii 298,621 110,848 4 0 409,469 102,367.25 0.71 187,773 45.86 221,696 54.14 38.20 1.18
Idaho 235,219 402,989 0 4 638,208 159,552.00 0.45 167,770 26.29 470,438 73.71 33.37 1.03
Illinois 3,265,509 1,970,612 21 0 5,236,121 249,339.10 0.29 1,294,897 24.73 3,941,224 75.27 21.80 0.67
Indiana 1,367,264 1,341,101 11 0 2,708,365 246,215.00 0.29 26,163 0.97 2,682,202 99.03 29.05 0.90
Iowa 818,240 677,508 7 0 1,495,748 213,678.29 0.34 140,732 9.41 1,355,016 90.59 30.62 0.94
Kansas 499,979 685,541 0 6 1,185,520 197,586.67 0.37 185,562 15.65 999,958 84.35 30.83 0.95
Kentucky 1,081,074 1,470,160 0 8 2,551,234 318,904.25 0.23 389,086 15.25 2,162,148 84.75 19.20 0.59
Louisiana 780,981 1,147,603 0 9 1,928,584 214,287.11 0.34 366,622 19.01 1,561,962 80.99 27.30 0.84
Maine 387,113 217,297 4 0 604,410 151,102.50 0.48 169,816 28.10 434,594 71.90 34.37 1.06
Maryland 1,409,150 873,320 10 0 2,282,470 228,247.00 0.32 535,830 23.48 1,746,640 76.52 24.22 0.75
Massachusetts 1,891,083 1,104,284 12 0 2,995,367 249,613.92 0.29 786,799 26.27 2,208,568 73.73 21.34 0.66
Michigan 2,867,680 2,044,405 17 0 4,912,085 288,946.18 0.25 823,275 16.76 4,088,810 83.24 20.81 0.64
Minnesota 1,573,246 1,275,653 10 0 2,848,899 284,889.90 0.25 297,593 10.45 2,551,306 89.55 22.71 0.70
Mississippi 517,899 684,475 0 6 1,202,374 200,395.67 0.36 166,576 13.85 1,035,798 86.15 31.05 0.96
Missouri 1,436,814 1,442,673 - - 2,879,487 - - 5,859 0.20 2,879,487 100.00 - -
Montana 220,401 236,513 0 3 456,914 152,304.67 0.47 16,112 3.53 440,802 96.47 45.75 1.41
Nebraska 316,189 439,665 0 4 755,854 188,963.50 0.38 123,476 16.34 632,378 83.66 31.98 0.99
Nevada 531,884 411,988 5 0 943,872 188,774.40 0.38 119,896 12.70 823,976 87.30 33.40 1.03
New Hampshire 358,426 292,677 4 0 651,103 162,775.75 0.44 65,749 10.10 585,354 89.90 39.89 1.23
New Jersey 2,073,934 1,540,907 15 0 3,614,841 240,989.40 0.30 533,027 14.75 3,081,814 85.25 25.55 0.79
New Mexico 454,291 334,298 5 0 788,589 157,717.80 0.46 119,993 15.22 668,596 84.78 38.83 1.20
New York 4,357,360 2,573,368 31 0 6,930,728 223,571.87 0.32 1,783,992 25.74 5,146,736 74.26 23.99 0.74
North Carolina 2,123,334 2,109,281 15 0 4,232,615 282,174.33 0.26 14,053 0.33 4,218,562 99.67 25.51 0.79
North Dakota 141,113 168,523 0 3 309,636 103,212.00 0.70 27,410 8.85 282,226 91.15 63.79 1.97
Ohio 2,708,988 2,502,218 20 0 5,211,206 260,560.30 0.28 206,770 3.97 5,004,436 96.03 26.62 0.82
Oklahoma 502,286 959,645 0 7 1,461,931 208,847.29 0.35 457,359 31.28 1,004,572 68.72 23.77 0.73
Oregon 695,695 532,078 7 0 1,227,773 175,396.14 0.41 163,617 13.33 1,064,156 86.67 35.69 1.10
Pennsylvania 3,184,807 2,584,119 21 0 5,768,926 274,710.76 0.26 600,688 10.41 5,168,238 89.59 23.56 0.73
Rhode Island 281,209 157,317 4 0 438,526 109,631.50 0.66 123,892 28.25 314,634 71.75 47.27 1.46
South Carolina 856,837 1,027,599 0 8 1,884,436 235,554.50 0.31 170,762 9.06 1,713,674 90.94 27.88 0.86
South Dakota 170,877 203,002 0 3 373,879 124,626.33 0.58 32,125 8.59 341,754 91.41 52.98 1.63
Tennessee 1,093,213 1,487,564 0 11 2,580,777 234,616.09 0.31 394,351 15.28 2,186,426 84.72 26.08 0.80
Texas 3,521,164 4,467,748 0 34 7,988,912 234,968.00 0.31 946,584 11.85 7,042,328 88.15 27.10 0.83
Utah 301,771 555,497 0 5 857,268 171,453.60 0.42 253,726 29.60 603,542 70.40 29.66 0.91
Vermont 201,999 95,422 3 0 297,421 99,140.33 0.73 106,577 35.83 190,844 64.17 46.75 1.44
Virginia 1,792,502 1,637,337 13 0 3,429,839 263,833.77 0.27 155,165 4.52 3,274,674 95.48 26.14 0.81
Washington 1,016,973 711,393 11 0 1,728,366 157,124.18 0.46 305,580 17.68 1,422,786 82.32 37.84 1.17
West Virginia 301,438 394,278 0 5 695,716 139,143.20 0.52 92,840 13.34 602,876 86.66 44.98 1.39
Wisconsin 1,670,474 1,258,181 10 0 2,928,655 292,865.50 0.25 412,293 14.08 2,516,362 85.92 21.19 0.65
Wyoming 80,496 160,639 0 3 241,135 80,378.33 0.90 80,143 33.24 160,992 66.76 60.00 1.85

Badges

My Alabama vote counted 0.75 times! How about yours?

My Alaska vote counted 2.28 times! How about yours?

My Arizona vote counted 1.09 times! How about yours?

My Arkansas vote counted 1.01 times! How about yours?

My California vote counted 0.94 times! How about yours?

My Colorado vote counted 0.84 times! How about yours?

My Connecticut vote counted 0.70 times! How about yours?

My D.C. vote counted 0.39 times! How about yours?

My Delaware vote counted 1.27 times! How about yours?

My Florida vote counted 0.73 times! How about yours?

My Georgia vote counted 0.82 times! How about yours?

My Hawaii vote counted 1.18 times! How about yours?

My Idaho vote counted 1.03 times! How about yours?

My Illinois vote counted 0.67 times! How about yours?

My Indiana vote counted 0.90 times! How about yours?

My Iowa vote counted 0.94 times! How about yours?

My Kansas vote counted 0.95 times! How about yours?

My Kentucky vote counted 0.59 times! How about yours?

My Louisiana vote counted 0.84 times! How about yours?

My Maine vote counted 1.06 times! How about yours?

My Maryland vote counted 0.75 times! How about yours?

My Massachusetts vote counted 0.66 times! How about yours?

My Michigan vote counted 0.64 times! How about yours?

My Minnesota vote counted 0.70 times! How about yours?

My Mississippi vote counted 0.96 times! How about yours?

My Missouri vote counted - times! How about yours?

My Montana vote counted 1.41 times! How about yours?

My Nebraska vote counted 0.99 times! How about yours?

My Nevada vote counted 1.03 times! How about yours?

My New Hampshire vote counted 1.23 times! How about yours?

My New Jersey vote counted 0.79 times! How about yours?

My New Mexico vote counted 1.20 times! How about yours?

My New York vote counted 0.74 times! How about yours?

My North Carolina vote counted 0.79 times! How about yours?

My North Dakota vote counted 1.97 times! How about yours?

My Ohio vote counted 0.82 times! How about yours?

My Oklahoma vote counted 0.73 times! How about yours?

My Oregon vote counted 1.10 times! How about yours?

My Pennsylvania vote counted 0.73 times! How about yours?

My Rhode Island vote counted 1.46 times! How about yours?

My South Carolina vote counted 0.86 times! How about yours?

My South Dakota vote counted 1.63 times! How about yours?

My Tennessee vote counted 0.80 times! How about yours?

My Texas vote counted 0.83 times! How about yours?

My Utah vote counted 0.91 times! How about yours?

My Vermont vote counted 1.44 times! How about yours?

My Virginia vote counted 0.81 times! How about yours?

My Washington vote counted 1.17 times! How about yours?

My West Virginia vote counted 1.39 times! How about yours?

My Wisconsin vote counted 0.65 times! How about yours?

My Wyoming vote counted 1.85 times! How about yours?