Much has been made of the vote in Precinct 4003, in part because I tweeted out some interesting facts as the counts came in on election night.
I thought it might be helpful to make a chart that shows each precinct with some conditional formatting on the cells to help you visualize the numbers and how they compare. “Favor” is the frack ban vote scaled red-yellow-green, to the degree to which that precinct favored the ban on hydraulic fracturing. “GOP” is scaled red-blue to the degree to which those who voted straight ticket did so for the GOP.
It’s important to know that this isn’t quite an apples-to-apples comparison up and down the chart. In Pct 1008, for example, 308 straight-ticket ballots were cast in Pct 1008, but just 35 ballots cast in the frack ban. Some voters in that precinct are likely outside the city limits and I’ll be checking into that.
Also, in Pct 4002 and 4042, there were only handful of voters who cast ballots.
It’s also important to know that the 308 straight-ticket voters in Pct 1008 notwithstanding, we have no idea how about 7,000 people contributed to one party or another, or if they even split their ticket at all. That’s roughly about a 27 percent difference between the two grand totals (25,376 frack ban votes, and 18,539 straight-party ticket votes in city precincts)
Let’s look at the precincts with the heaviest turnout. The top five were 4003 (2,746), 4007 (1,799), 1017 (1,728), 1018 (1,718) and 1012 (1,433).
Armchair pundits could point to the outcome in the first two and explain it away on party politics, but I don’t believe that would withstand much ground-truthing. There’s a lot more at play, and if you look closely at the next three, Precincts 1017, 1018 and 1012 tell the story much closer to the political reality in Denton.