US Presidential Elections 2016, Part 2

Ohio | Wisconsin | Pennsylvania

I wanted to follow my earlier post about the 2016 US Presidential Election by comparing the change in the Democratic Party’s vote share in the presidential race vs. the senate races in Ohio, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. In line with the presidential election, these three states swung from the Democratic Party to GOP in the senate election. Given the large decline in the DP’s vote share in the presidential election, the outcome of the senate election is not unexpected since most voters tend to vote down the ballot. However, comparing the voting behaviour in the presidential election to the senate races at the county level may help us understand voters’ aversion to Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. And as you will see below, despite moving to GOP, these three key states show different voting behaviour.

Below, for each state the first graph plots the percentage change in the Democratic Party’s vote share from 2012 in the presidential election vs the senate election for each county. Counties where the decline in the DP’s vote share was greater in the presidential election than the senate election will appear below the 45 degree line. The second graph (barplot) shows the change the in the vote share for each county.


In Ohio, Democratic Party experienced a smaller loss in its voting share in the presidential race compared to the senate election. When we look at the number of votes cast, we see a significant increase in GOP’s votes in the senate race, but a smaller increase for Donald Trump which can be interepted as an aversion to vote for Trump in Ohio. In fact, Trump received less votes than Portman did. On the contrary, Hillary Clinton received 467,128 more votes than the Democrats did in the senate race.

Clinton Obama Strickland(D’16) Brown(D’12) Trump Romney Portman(R’16) Mandel(R’12) Dem Pres. Dem Senate GOP Pres. GOP Senate
2,397,001 2,697,260 1,929,873 2,645,901 2,777,984 2,593,779 3,048,467 2,371,230 -300,259 -716,028 184,205 677,237