December 01, 2006
Precinct analysis: One more thing about Danno

Didn't quite get the chance to do the next writeup that I have in mind, but in the course of noodling around with it, I found another nice little illustration of why Dan Patrick was not exactly all that and a bag of chips. While looking at the data in HD138, I noticed the following:

Pcnct Culberson Henley Murphy Thibaut Patrick Kubosh
130 933 302 918 320 902 326
356 778 397 786 386 782 406
395 600 245 608 246 581 270
438 742 237 737 246 725 250
483 918 562 884 598 915 583
492 658 310 652 328 645 340
493 574 243 581 242 543 272
499 884 317 896 321 844 352
504 789 328 777 348 758 358
625 513 290 501 303 515 297
626 616 410 598 428 583 453
706 102 65 103 65 107 64
727 207 283 193 280 194 298

Total 8,314 3,989 8,234 4,111 8,094 4,269

We already knew that Patrick trailed most of the State Rep candidates, Murphy included. This is the precinct breakdown of that, with Culberson/Henley thrown in for extra contrast. Even though Culberson and Murphy had to contend with a Libertarian on the ballot as well as their Democratic opponents, at least one of them topped Patrick's vote total in 10 of the 12 precincts, with both of them doing better than Danno in 8 of them. Maybe three-term Congressman Culberson should be leading the pack here, even with a Genuine Celebrity on the ballot and even though Henley provided a fairly strong challenge, but what about fellow first-time candidate Jim Murphy? You'd think Danno's star would have outshined Murphy's, but you'd be wrong. And note again that this is not due to undervoting - Michael Kubosh picks up all of the tallies that evaporate from the R column. The total spread across the three races is a mere 58 votes, so this is as concise a comparison as you could want.

Anyway. It doesn't tell us much that we didn't already know, but it's a nice capsule review of the phenomenon. More to come from other races soon.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on December 01, 2006 to Election 2006 | TrackBack

I found another nice little illustration of why Dan Patrick was not exactly all that and a bag of chips.

Eh, maybe. Another way of looking at it is that he ran as an unabashed evangelical conservative firebrand, and still racked up a huge victory.

In comparison, how many candidates ran as unabashed secular liberals of the Charles Kuffner variety and outperformed Dan Patrick? :)

Posted by: Kevin Whited on December 1, 2006 7:48 AM

Kevin, I'm going to type this slowly so that maybe you'll be able to follow me: I specifically compared Dan Patrick to the other Republicans in SD07, just as I've been comparing Democrats like Jim Henley to the other Democrats in their districts. On that basis, his performance was mediocre. What else would you call it when he did no better than the average no-name downballot judicial candidate? Ten of the 18 countywide Republicans, and eight of the nine statewides, had a better vote percentage than Danno did. I call that "mediocre". What do you call it?

Putting in terms that might be more familiar to you, Patrick did not beat the spread. Thirteen of the 28 other Republicans on the ballot everywhere in SD07 got 70% or more of the vote. That includes such luminaries as Susan Brown, Reagan Cartwright Helm, and Jay Karnahan, none of whom I'd venture to guess you could pick out of a police lineup. Dan Patrick, who I think you'll agree had more going for him than those folks, got 69%. By that reckoning, his victory wasn't "huge", it was fair to middling.

Do we understand the point I'm making now, or do you need me to explain it again?

Posted by: Charles Kuffner on December 1, 2006 8:54 AM

I like how Kevin puts the smiley at the end of every one of his comments, as if adding a "just kidding" somehow mitigates his trolling or conceals his baldfaced attempts to draw traffic to his site by posting comments here.

Posted by: Pete on December 1, 2006 10:11 AM

As the consultant for the Patrick Campaign I feel obligated to point out one huge flaw in your election analysis.

Unlike the other campaigns we are compared to, the Patrick Campaign did absolutely no campaigning during the general election. While the other campaigns spent thousands on direct voter contact, we did not send one piece of mail, did not print one sign, did no block walking and ran no television ads. Dan ran a few radio ads on KSEV and we sent out just one automated phone call between early voting and Election Day. Not exactly apples to apples comparison.

Internally we predicted Dan would get between 62-65% of the vote on Election Day. We ended up with nearly 70%.

When the votes were tallied in the General, like the Primary, we were pleasantly surprised.

I know these facts do not fit into the story you are trying to peddle.

Ask yourself this very simple question: If the Patrick Campaign would have decided to spend thousands to communicate to November voters like the other referenced campaigns, do you think Patrick would have widened his margin of victory?

Even a casual observer of statistics can point out the flaw in your weak attempt to undermine Patrick’s historical victory. Your readers deserve to know your “research” is tainted by your disgust for the issues Patrick champions.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity point this out.

All the best,
Court Koenning

Posted by: Court Koenning on December 2, 2006 12:20 AM

Well, Court, thanks for the feedback. If you think Dan's celebrity, the publicity he got for his ibg primary win, and his continued presence on the radio didn't do at least as much to boost his presence and name recognition among the electorate, well, let's just say I disagree. And if you think that 62-65% was a realistic ballpark for that district, then you must have been really really pessimistic about GOP turnout this year. If that had indeed happened, we'd be talking about the Democratic sweep of Harris County instead.

But thanks for your perspective. It's good to know.

Posted by: Charles Kuffner on December 2, 2006 10:12 AM

I don't care what the stats show. Dan Patrick is an idiot.

Posted by: John cobarruvias on December 2, 2006 4:15 PM

Thanks for responding.

Might I remind you Dan’s continued radio presence is merely one dimension of a campaign? I would assume you wouldn’t suggest a candidate only employ one medium of communication to be competitive. And let’s be honest, the publicity of the big primary win is not something a November voter spends a lot of time thinking about. That was eight months ago and they could give a rip.

I stand behind my previous statements about the fact you failed to take into consideration we did NO general election campaigning. That is a significant point when you try to compare campaigns for the purpose of making assumptions on performance.

Furthermore, I would be more than happy to sit down with you to tell you how the 62-65% number was reached. The Democrat "sweep" trigger in this district would be somewhere in the high 50's.


Posted by: Court Koenning on December 4, 2006 12:23 AM