Monday, November 12, 2012

NOVA v. ROVA = Massachusetts v. Georgia?

Tom Jackman has an interesting analysis up on The State of NOVA blog comparing results in Northern Virginia v. the rest of the Commonwealth and looking at differences in Virginia exit poll results from 2008 and 2012.  Not Larry Sabato (Ben Tribbett) also recently started a series on his blog comparing House of Delegate electoral margins to different states to give some perspective to how different Virginia is.  I thought I'd take a shot at merging both.

Defining NOVA as Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William, including Fairfax City, Falls Church City, Manassas City and Manassas Park and using the Unofficial Results (not including the Fairfax County absentees & provisional votes (over 90,000 votes).  Here were the margins:
  • President Obama's wins NOVA by 21.4% (60.7% v. 39.3%)
  • Governor Romney's margin in the "Rest of Virginia" or ROVA was 3.4% (48.3% v. 51.7%). 
If you compare that to other states, NOVA's margin sits between Massachusetts and California and ROVA's margin sits between North Carolina and Georgia (see chart below from Nate Silver at the New York Times).  Well I knew that Massachusetts was a Commonwealth like Virginia, but I did not realize we also had that much in common politically.  Quite a juxtaposition which perhaps gives you some perspective about our challenges in Richmond.



  1. Your chart also highlights that if Romney had won the "key" swing states of Virginia, Ohio, and Florida, Obama would still have won the electoral vote.

  2. Nate Silver's chart David! But you are correct. This is why there is so much consternation on the other side right now.