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Precinct data: The City Council districts revised

Last week, I presented data on the 2008 election results by City Council district and by city of Houston/not City of Houston. I said at the time that the measurement was a bit rough because precinct boundaries do not conform to City of Houston boundaries. After the post was published, I heard from Eric Ingenthron, who has been crunching some numbers for the Karen Derr campaign, and he was able to provide me some more granular data about individual precincts and the number of registrants in each that have the “city of Houston” designation on them. I then used his data to refine my results, and this is what I came up with.

District Obama Noriega Garcia Judicials ============================================ Houston 61.0 61.8 65.9 60.9 Harris 39.5 40.5 45.7 39.8 A 45.4 46.6 52.9 45.2 B 91.0 91.6 92.9 91.7 C 60.6 59.9 64.5 58.5 D 88.9 87.1 88.7 86.9 E 40.8 42.4 47.4 40.9 F 63.7 65.2 68.8 65.0 G 42.2 40.6 45.6 39.2 H 68.8 72.5 77.7 70.9 I 72.6 79.0 81.6 76.5

The first thing to note is that by getting better information about the Houston/not Houston distinction, I was able to shift about 100,000 votes that I had been counting as Houston out of that bucket and into the not-Houston bucket. Now instead of counting for about 57% of the total vote, the city of Houston now accounts for about 52% of the total, which is a much more accurate representation of the city to county population ratio. That’s also the reason why the Democrats’ share of the vote in each region went up, as the votes in question were less Democratic overall than the city of Houston share, but more so than the non-Houston share.

The biggest differences in the individual Council districts were in A, which shifted about six points in the Dems’ favor, and B, which moved about four points in that direction. District D also became a bit bluer, by about a point. That made District A much closer to parity, with Adrian Garcia carrying the district, and confirmed my initial suspicion, which I’d thought had been rebutted, that it is winnable this year by a Democrat. District E became about a point less Democratic, District G a tenth of a point less so; they were the only districts to move away from the Dems in this recalculation. All other districts remained about the same.

Anyway, that’s the revised data. Greg, who was correct to suspect that such a refinement would move the needle about two points overall inside Houston towards the Dems, has more.

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