Destination 270

SMU Students Analyze the 2012 Presidential Election


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20 Female Senators in 113th Congress

The 113th Congress will have the most female senators of any Congress with 20 women representing their states.

Female candidates took seats in some of the most competitive races in the country, “Female candidates were a key part of the Democratic Party’s strategy to keep the Senate, with candidates like McCaskill, Baldwin and Warren in some of the most competitive races in the country,” as reported by the  Huffington Post.

Bloomberg Businessweek reports the newly formed landscape of female lawmakers, “Women made gains throughout the nation on Nov. 6 and will occupy a record 20 U.S. Senate seats in January, including five who won first terms — in Wisconsin, Massachusetts, Hawaii, Nebraska and North Dakota. All will take seats held by men, and four of the five, including Democrats Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts and Tammy Baldwin in Wisconsin, are the first women elected to the office in their states.”

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Superstition Ain’t the Way

Anyone who’s ever put a little extra length in their stride to avoid stepping on a crack in the sidewalk or thrown salt over their shoulder after spilling some on the table understands the seriousness of superstitions. Those of us who are superstitious regard our beliefs as totally legitimate, and arguing the matter is pointless. Some superstitions, however, beg to be challenged. Take superstitions about the presidential election, for instance. I would term these as correlation-based superstitions and, while they are certainly fun to pay attention to, they don’t necessarily hold water.

Here is a list of a few election-related superstitions and coincidental trends, a bit of history behind them, and whether they were accurate predictors of the outcome of this year’s presidential election:

1) The infamous “Redskin Rule”

  • If the Redskins win their last home game before election day, the incumbent party wins the election. If the Redskins lose, the challenger wins.
  • The rule has held true in 17 of the 18 elections since 1940. The exception was in 2004 when the Redskins lost the home game before the election, but George W. Bush (the incumbent) still won the election. Continue reading


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Both candidates have made it clear that women are the key independent voters they must win in order to secure the Presidential office. There’s currently lots of speculation about whether women will vote more on economic issues, which has been the Romney camp’s view for most of the campaign, or on social issues like abortion and contraception.

Why has the 2012 election turned into a race for the women’s vote? Women tend to decide later in the game than men on who they are going to vote for. There are still 17 days until the election, however most of the constituency has made up their mind as to whom they will vote for. That means that women will be the vital tipping point for a candidate in the swing states.

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Foreign Policy in the 2012 Election

For most of the general election, foreign policy has not been mentioned at all. The main issue continued to be the economy and creating jobs. With high levels of unemployment and low economic growth, the economy issue was an easy way for Mitt Romney to gain significant ground against President Obama.

In the past few weeks, foreign policy has become an increasingly important and divisive issue between the two presidential candidates. The Vice-Presidential debate and the second presidential debate featured major clashes over foreign policy issues. The debates and the campaigns have now brought foreign policy to the forefront of the election, making it just as big of an issue as the economy.

Although some may think that foreign policy is not that important to voters, it has been a major factor in many elections throughout our nation’s history. Both Woodrow Wilson and Franklin D. Roosevelt ran during a time when the world was engulfed in war. Every president from Truman to Bush Sr. focused on the Soviet Union and the spread of communism, the major foreign policy issue during that era.

What are the major foreign policy issues of this election? Continue reading


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Zingers

Zinger from Best Movie Ever Entertainment News

Zinger from Best Movie Ever Entertainment News

CNN just published an interesting article called Election spawns a new lingo, from ‘Obamaloney’ to ‘Romnesia’A great read to see some of the phrases that have taken this election by storm.

Many people like to call these new lingoes “zingers.” Zingers are witty, often caustic remarks.

CNN author, Micheal Martinez, noted, “Sometimes a slip or sometimes a calculation, some words and expressions uttered by the candidates have proved so memorable that wordsmiths and wisecracks rush to the Internet to stake out a new website or social media handle to capitalize on the moment.”

Some of zingers or slips ups become a driving part of their opponent’s campaign. Obama’s slip up, saying “You didn’t build that,” referring that business’ needed the government to be successful, became a themed night Romney Campaign employed at the RNC. Romney’s 47% remark, gave the Obama a campaign a catchy assault weapon that Biden used during the Vice Presidential debate.

Some of the best zingers are the words or expressions that the social media world pick out as witty and relevant, even though the candidate themselves had no intention making it a zinger. When Biden said the “malarkey” in response to Ryan’s answers. I never would have imagined the social media world’s response to single vocabulary word.

Yet, the ones that keep audiences laughing are calculated clever remarks written by the candidates themselves. Most recently, the “Romnesia” set the crowd roaring when Obama invented a new word, fusing his challenger’s name and amnesia. “At one point, Romney wearied of what he called Obama’s baloney. So Romney gave the country a new lunch meat: Obamaloney,” wrote Micheal Martinez.

Hopefully, the next debate will give our country a few more zingers to remember this historic election by.

Keep checking Destination 270 for all your election updates and stories.


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An Electoral College Tie?

In the past two weeks, the presidential race has narrowed to an even closer contest than analysts previously thought it would be. This has increased the possibility of a tie in the Electoral College, each candidate only receiving 269 votes. Above, you can see a map of one of the possibilities of a tie from Nate Silver.

With only a handful of battleground states, there are several different scenarios for a tie in electoral votes. Furthermore, Maine and Nebraska have the potential to split electoral votes. This rarely ever happens, but Nebraska gave 4 votes to McCain and 1 to Obama in 2008. Although it does not look like this will occur in 2012, any potential for one split vote could make the race a tie. Is it really possible that 2012 could end up as an Electoral College tie? Continue reading