Post Election Observation

Well, Election ’08 is now history…literally. As with all elections, there are winners and losers. There are those who exult in victory, and others who weep in defeat.

Emotions can really get wrapped up in our political
interests. We tend to cling very closely with our ideological roots. California has a well-earned reputation for being liberal and “progressive”. What I found interesting were these maps from the LA Times. The map to the left is a county-by-county map of how the people of California voted on Proposition 8. You’ll notice that while the total vote was only a 5% spread, an overwhelming majority of counties in California voted to retain the traditional definition of marriage (colored green). 42 of California’s 58 counties were in favor of Proposition 8, preserving the definition of marriage to be between one man and one woman.

Meanwhile, in the presidential race, you see a vast difference in how California voted. For instance, in Los Angeles County, Obama, (blue), got nearly 70% of the votes. However, Prop 8 won in LA County by a 50.4% to 49.6% margin.

I haven’t been able to put my finger on how California can be so liberal in one area, yet pretty conservative in another.

So I guess I have a couple questions I’d like to open up for your theories.

First, why do you think the counties tend to be grouped together geographically and ideologically? What is the connection between where we live and how we live and think?

Second, what do you think about California virtually always voting for the Democrat in the presidential race, but maintaining a very conservative attitude about the hot topic of gay marriage?

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