As many of you know, Hillary Clinton won the vote in Cobb County by a 2.1% margin. This surprised many people, since Cobb has been solidly GOP red for decades. As soon as the precinct-level results became available (at about 1 a.m., unfortunately for my sleep patterns) I loaded a spreadsheet and began figuring out how people voted in different areas of the county. It will be a few weeks before I’m really finished with this, if I ever really stop rearranging and mulling over the numbers, but I’m going to post interesting things I find as I slog through the data. If you are a numbers geek like me, you can get the complete data in several formats at the Secretary of State’s election reports on Cobb County.
First I should say that this wasn’t a Democratic tidal wave in the county. Incumbent U.S. senator Johnny Isakson beat Democratic challenger Jim Barksdale in Cobb. But he didn’t win by nearly the statewide margin. (Cobb: 50.9-45.4, Statewide: 55-40.8%), The Libertarian candidate, Allen Buckley, got just over 5% of the vote in Cobb.
Smyrna city councilwoman Teri Anulewicz wrote a good summary of the results: “Is Cobb County Trumpophobic?”.
The first thing I’m going to post is a simple list of the top 20 precincts for Clinton. Then I’ll do the same for Trump, followed by Google’s useful precinct map. If you click on the little icon on the upper left of the map, it will give you a menu of the precinct by name, so you can figure out where any district is on the map. I ranked by number of raw votes within each precinct, not who won the district (hence Smyrna 4A is in both Trump and Clinton’s top 20, since both candidates posted significant numbers from that precinct). I did this because raw numbers of votes accumulated is what’s important in determining who won the county, not who won within each precinct:
|Precinct||Total voters in precinct||Trump||Clinton|
|Harmony Leland 01||4520||646||2753|
|Terrell Mill 01||4372||869||1982|
Here are the top 20 precincts for Trump:
|Precinct||Total Voters in Precinct||Trump||Clinton|
|Lost Mountain 03||4312||2342||1081|
|Lost Mountain 02||3572||2112||680|
|Bells Ferry 03||4866||2108||1357|
|Mount Bethel 01||3618||1668||1172|
|Mars Hill 01||2783||1638||472|
|Post Oak 01||3181||1629||849|
I’ll be writing much more about what these numbers mean in subsequent posts, but here are a few things to ponder. First, there were very few true blowout precincts. I haven’t looked over other counties yet, but I suspect that there are north Georgia precincts where the spread in Trump’s favor was enormous, and likewise precincts in the City of Atlanta where Clinton’s vote was near-unanimous. Second, while Clinton’s support is generally clustered in south Cobb and Smyrna, and Trumps best performance seemed to be to the east and north, there are a significant number of votes for each candidate spread across the entire county. Clinton won a Kennesaw district, Marietta and its surrounding areas were a mixed bag, and Trump won a Mableton precinct. Mableton was particularly interesting because there were a number of competitive precincts, where a GOTV effort could have tilted the precinct. Here are a few Mableton precincts:
As I digest these numbers, I think clearer patterns will emerge. There are two things I’m really interested in exploring. One is to figure out how much of Clinton’s success was due to aversion to Trump among some otherwise Republican voters. The second is to get an idea of how much impact demographic changes have had on Cobb’s voting patterns over time. Finally, voter turnout among registered voters gives an interesting picture, that you see by visiting this map from the Secretary of State. The heaviest turnouts were in the Mableton/Smyrna/Vinings area, East Cobb, and west Cobb. North Cobb and south Cobb (around Six Flags) had lower turnout.