Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Collin Co Election Results

by Michael Handley

Like much of the rest of Texas, 2012 Collin County election results drifted to the right.  On measures of both candidate and party, Collin County voted less Democratic and more Republican in 2012 than in 2008.

Obama's performance in Collin County declined on both raw vote count and vote spread and Romney's performance improved over McCain's 2008 vote count and percentage wins.

This table represents early results and does not include
the number of provisional ballots accepted for counting
or final number of mail ballots returned. 3,565
provisional ballots were cast. Final numbers will be
reported in December.
While straight party voting increased for both parties in 2012 over 2008, Republican straight party voting increased much more than Democratic party voting. 4,176 more Democrats and 20,199 more Republicans voted straight party in 2012 over 2008.

Comparing ballots cast as a percentage of registered voters, 2012 turnout lags behind 2008 turnout in Collin County, as it also does in eleven other of Texas' fifteen largest counties.

According to Texas DSHS Center for Health Statistics population estimates the Collin County population base has expanded over the last four years.

While the population has grown, the percentage of voting age persons (VAP) who registered to vote for the presidential election has fallen from 2008 levels.

Does this mean these Texans were less motivated to vote in 2012 than in 2008?

It seems apparent from the county and top line turnout numbers that Texas Democrats, including those who live in Collin County were less motivated to vote in 2012 than in 2008.


Looking down ballot there were five countywide Democratic candidates on Collin County ballots for place seats on the 5th District Court of Appeals:
  • Tonya Holt for 5th Court of Appeals Place 11
  • Penny Phillips for 5th Court of Appeals Place 5
  • Larry Praeger for 5th of Court Appeals Place 12
  • Dan Wood for 5th of Court Appeals Place 2
  • David Hanshen for 5th Court of Appeals Place 9
In addition to Collin County, the 5th Court of Appeals candidate names were on countywide ballots in five other North Texas counties: Dallas, Grayson, Hunt, Rockwall and Kaufman.  Election results for these five regional Democratic candidates closely followed top of the ticket presidential results in all six counties of that district.

All of the 5th Court of Appeals candidates won by comfortable margins in Democratic candidate friendly Dallas County.But each lost by very wide margins across the other five deeply red Republican counties, particularly in Collin County.  Their losses across the five GOP heavy counties more than offset their Dallas Co. margins of victory.

The five Democratic 5th district candidates won by an average of 58 percent to 42 percent (+98,000 votes) over their Republican opponents in Dallas County.

Click on the tables to enlarge

But they lost by an average of 33 percent to 67 percent (-94,000 votes) in Collin Co.

The other four GOP stronghold counties in the 5th district, while much smaller in population than Dallas or Collin counties, tallied up an average 28 percent to 72 percent loss (-62,300 votes)  in those counties for the Democratic candidates. 

For the entire six county 5th district the Democratic candidates lost by an average 48 percent to 52 percent of the vote on an average 57,900 vote deficit.

Some hopeful Democrats called Collin County the key to victory for these 5th district candidates. The idea was that the 5th district candidates, while bound to loose the county, could never-the-less limit their vote losses in Collin Co. such that their Dallas Co (vote surplus) wins would still carry them to district victory.

Those saying that Collin County was the key to victory for 5th district candidates apparently expected them to receive no less than 45 percent of the Collin County vote. A very rosy expectation, indeed!

The reality is that in 2008, Obama pulled only 37 percent of the county's vote, and no other Democratic candidate has topped 35 percent of the countywide vote since the mid 1990's.  This is not to say that politically moderate and liberal people do not inhabit the county in significant number, because they do.  They just call themselves independents and are resolutely alienated from party affiliation and voting.

Results for the few other Democratic candidates on county ballots for statewide and district office also followed top of ballot  results, as shown in the table at right.

Most people who voted for Pres. Obama also voted for all the other Democrats listed down ballot, either by marking "Straight Party" or individually marking each candidate.  An average of 8 percent of voters marked their ballot for Pres. Obama, but did not vote for other down ballot Democratic candidates.


Collin Co. Ballot Positions With A Democratic Choice
  1. United States Senator
  2. United States Representative, District 4
  3. United States Representative, District 32
  4. Railroad Commissioner
  5. Justice, Supreme Court, Place 6
  6. Presiding Judge, Court of Criminal Appeals
  7. Member, State Board of Education, District 12
  8. State Senator, District 8
  9. Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District, Place 2
  10. Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District, Place 5
  11. Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District, Place 9
  12. Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District, Place 11
  13. Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District, Place 12

Collin Co. Ballot Positions With No Democratic Choice
  1. United States Representative, District 3
  2. Railroad Commissioner, Unexpired Term
  3. Justice, Supreme Court, Place 2
  4. Justice, Supreme Court, Place 4
  5. Judge, Court of Criminal Appeals Place 7
  6. Judge, Court of Criminal Appeals Place 8
  7. State Senator, District 30
  8. State Representative, District 33
  9. State Representative, District 66
  10. State Representative, District 67
  11. State Representative, District 70
  12. State Representative, District 89
  13. Chief Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District
  14. Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District, Place 10
  15. Justice, 5th Court of Appeals District, Place 13
  16. District Judge, 199th Judicial District
  17. District Judge, 380th Judicial District
  18. District Judge, 401st Judicial District
  19. District Judge, 416th Judicial District
  20. Judge, County Court at Law Number 2
  21. Sheriff
  22. County Tax Assessor-Collector
  23. District Clerk
  24. County Commissioner, Precinct 1
  25. County Commissioner, Precinct 3
  26. Justice of the Peace, Precinct No. 3, Place 1
  27. Constable, Precinct No. 1
  28. Constable, Precinct No. 2
  29. Constable, Precinct No. 3
  30. Constable, Precinct No. 4
Click the following chart to enlarge:

The following table includes initial election results reported by the Collin co. election office a few hours after polls closed on Tuesday, November 6, 2012.  These results do not include provisional ballots accepted for counting or all mail ballots surrendered to Election Judges for in-person voters.

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