Florida Electoral Map: McCain Swamps Romney in Miami; Hillary Wins Beauty Contest

John McCain beat Mitt Romney by eight points in Pinellas County and six points in Pasco County on his way to a statewide victory Tuesday. McCain’s wins in those two counties, which many analysts suggested would be a barometer of his overall success, pretty much mirrored his 36-31% win over Romney statewide (Map 2).

McCain won 45 of Florida’s 67 counties, which is a well-balanced rout. But more importantly, he posted victories in three crucial areas: He did well in the military-laden Panhandle, where he tied Mike Huckabee for Evangelicals. He also won most of the I-4 Corridor, including big victories in Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties.

But McCain dominated in Southeast Florida. He won Palm Beach County by 9,000 votes, Broward County by nearly 17,000 and Miami-Dade by a whoppin’ 35,000 (Map 3). According to CBS News exit polls reported by Politicos Jonathan Martin, McCain was buoyed by strong support in the Latino community, which cast half of its votes for him (Map 4).

Romney ran poorly with Latinos, although he did win 40 percent of conservatives and over a third of Evangelicals, which was the most of any candidate for both demographic groups. Romney also ran well in the retirement communities along the Gulf Coast, including Lee and Collier Counties. He swamped McCain by 12,000 votes in Duval County (Jacksonville), which I have to admit I don’t really understand (Map 5).

Rudy Giuliani won over a quarter of the vote and finished second in New York’s southern outpost of Miami-Dade, but it was not enough to push him above 15 percent statewide (Map 6). Interestingly, Mike Huckabee won four counties – Holmes, Washington, Gilchrest and Suwanee – but they were small, rural counties in the North, and the former Arkansas governor came in fourth (Map 7).

Map 1 – Florida Population Density

Florida Population Density

Map 2 – Florida Republican Electoral Map (Washington Post)

Florida Republican Electoral Map

Map 3 – John McCain in Florida (Washington Post)

John McCain in Florida

Map 4 – Latinos in Florida — The more purple counties have higher percentages of Latinos.

Latinos in Florida

Map 5 – Mitt Romney in Florida (Washington Post)

Mitt Romney in Florida

Map 6 – Rudy Giuliani in Florida (Washington Post)

Rudy Giuliani in Florida

Map 7 – Mike Huckabee in Florida (Washington Post)

Mike Huckabee in Florida

Map 8 – Republican Margins of Victory in Florida (New York Times) — Note that the colors are different.

Republican Margins of Victory in Florida

On the Democratic side, the Billary machine celebrated a 50-33% win over Barack Obama even though the delegates will likely not be seated at the DNC convention. Clinton took 48 of Florida’s 67 counties, including every one south of Gainesville. Obama racked up big margins in heavily African-American counties like Duval and Leon, the home to FAMU (Maps 9-11).

John Edwards won a respectable 11 counties and placed second in 15. But as a testament to how rural those counties are, he ended up only taking 14 percent statewide, and was prompted to drop of the race Wednesday morning (Map12).

My theory on Edwards is that his departure helps Obama in states like California, where voters on tuned in the race and understand Edwards “progressive” ideas. But it hurts Obama in rural states like Georgia and Missouri, where white many voters still see Edwards as the down-home Southern candidate, and are not likely to support Obama.

Map 9 – Florida Democratic Electoral Map (Washington Post)

Florida Democratic Electoral Map

Map 10 – Hillary Clinton in Florida (Washington Post)

Hillary Clinton in Florida

Map 11 – Barack Obama in Florida (Washington Post)

Barack Obama in Florida

Map 12 – John Edwards in Florida (Washington Post)

John Edwards in Florida

Map 13 – Democratic Margins of Victory in Florida (New York Times)

Democratic Margins of Victory in Florida

 

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One response to “Florida Electoral Map: McCain Swamps Romney in Miami; Hillary Wins Beauty Contest

  1. I understand that Romney had a great deal of support from local officials in Jacksonville including Mayor John Peyton, former House Speaker John Thrasher and a number of local legislators. Also, Jacksonville is a very conservative town.

    I think local endorsements though played a role in Romney’s victories in the Ft Myers-Naples area (Cong Connie Mack) and the Orlando suburbs (Cong Tom Feeney). And again these are very conservative areas.’

    Without Governor Crist’s endorsement, Romney probably would have won the Tampa area and the entire state.

    If you would like any county maps showing the results by precinct please let me know.

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