Destination 270

SMU Students Analyze the 2012 Presidential Election


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Patrick Murphy Claims Victory, Despite Lingering Recount Drama

Although Florida’s 18th Congressional District has yet to be officially called in favor of Democrat Patrick Murphy, he sure is “taking it like a champion.”  Shortly after the initial recount in St. Lucie County boosted him ahead of Allen West, Murphy took the stage at his victory party in West Palm Beach to accept what he believed his hard-fought win.

While Murphy’s acceptance speech was indeed thoughtful and gracious towards his supporters, there was no forgoing the patronizing attitude that both candidates held towards each other throughout the entire campaign.

“Allen West was quite a character to run against, and I’ll keep it at that.  And hopefully that’s the last time I ever need to mention his name, too,” Murphy said of his opponent.  He left it short and sweet, yet it the midst of a potential recount, there was certainly no ‘forgiving and forgetting’.   Instead, Murphy has maintained his portrayal of West as an extremist caricature.  According to Politico, Murphy claimed his win to be “a signal that voters were tired of the extremism West represented.”

Over the weekend, Patrick Murphy scoffed at West’s allegations of election fraud in St. Lucie County, claiming that he was ready to just move on.

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Allen West Demands A Recount

It wouldn’t be like the state of Florida to not have some sort of recount battle ensue after Election Day.  We thought it might have come in the form of a statewide presidential recount; however, it is no less surprising that it is coming out of Florida’s 18th congressional district.

That’s right, what was potentially one of the years nastiest congressional races has still not been finally declared, as Republican incumbent, Allen West is demanding a recall after loosing by less than 2,500 votes. Continue reading


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Spanish Romney Ad Pinned Obama to Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez—Did it pay off?

Just days before the election, the Romney campaign released a Spanish-language ad in the Miami area in an attempt to detract Hispanic voter’s away from voting for President Obama.  The ad shows clips of Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez, and the niece of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro endorsing Obama.

“Who supports Barack Obama?” the narrator asks in Spanish before the clips of the two endorsements run.

“And to top it off, Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency sent emails for Hispanic Heritage month with Che Guevara’s photo,” the narrator continues in reference to an internal email at the EPA. Continue reading


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Cuban-American Voters in Florida Shift Left

What once was a Republican stronghold in the Sunshine State looks to have entered the final phases of a potentially devastating realignment for the party.  The Cuban-American vote has long been a solid support system for Republicans in Florida due to the party’s outspoken stance against the Castro regime.  They have also been an extremely important demographic to the Republican Party, as they have made up the plurality of Hispanic voters in the state, especially in Miami.

However, this year may have brought about a troubling reality for the party, as they nearly lost the Cuban-American vote to President Obama.  According to the polling firm, Bendixen-Armandi, which conducts Hispanic polling for President Obama, the president won 48 percent of the Cuban-American vote in Florida, compared to Romney’s 52 percent.  This is a record high for any Democratic candidate. Continue reading


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Romney Failed to Capture Key Florida Demographics

In an NBC News analysis, one of the key reasons behind is narrow loss in Florida came to light.  Data revealed in the analysis showed that the majority of Florida’s Jewish, Hispanic, and even Cuban-American voters chose Barack Obama.

The Romney team put a lot of effort in to the state’s Jewish community this election, however, it looks as though they might have put too many of their apples in one cart.  Although Mitt Romney was able to lure in more  Jewish voters this election than John McCain was in 2008, his support among this critical demographic was not nearly as high as I am sure his campaign expected.   Romney picked up only 30% of the vote in Florida, while President Obama won 66%.

While this year did show an 11% decrease in the state’s Jewish support for Obama, it looks like it came at a rough price. The Cuban-American vote. Continue reading


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Florida Sends 17 Republicans, 10 Democrats to the US House of Representatives

All 27 of Florida’s seats in the U.S. House of Representatives were up for grabs this election season, with four of them lacking an incumbent candidate and one going unopposed. Of those 27 districts, 17 of them elected Republicans while 10 of them elected Democrats.  (This is, however, assuming Patrick Murphy to be the ultimate victor in District 18.  More on that race to come.)

Here is a breakdown of the each district and their results. (* signifies the incumbent candidate) Continue reading


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This Year’s Constitutional Amendments Proposed in Florida, 8 of 11 Defeated

This year’s ballot in Florida has been criticized for being too long and wordy to the point where people did not even understand what they were voting for.  Among the names of the different candidates running for various national, statewide and local positions were also eleven different amendment proposals for the Florida Constitution.  While it is not clear what confused whom on the ballot, it is likely that the different amendment proposals tripped a few people up.  The majority of these amendments dealt with tax exemptions and or penalties, and we all know that logistically these things can be a little tricky for the average American to understand.

Here is a simple breakdown of the different amendments on this year’s Florida ballot

Amendment 1: No Mandatory Health Coverage.  This prevents penalties for not purchasing health care coverage in order to comply with federal health care reforms.  The amendment stated that the government will be barred from forcing citizens to purchase health insurance.

  • Results: No: 51.5%, Yes: 48.5%

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