Added Fair Electoral Tally for 2012

I created a notebook to compute what the Electoral College tally would have been in 2012, had my fair and efficient method been used. As one might expect, Barack Obama would still have won, but at 276-261 (Gary Johnson managing to win 1 vote in CA) instead of the apparent blowout 332-206 he received under the winner-take-all (WTA) system. This is also much more in line with the 51.1%-47.2% national popular vote result, also as might be expected. Both candidates got a bump over the popular percentage: Obama got 51.3% of the Electoral College votes, while Romney got 48.5%. This makes sense, since even under my system, the party more popular in the less populous states gets a representation boost. It’s a fundamental design feature of the Electoral College, and I don’t attempt to diminish the states’ role, like a national popular vote hack would. See the full details in the current commit.

These fantasy tallies make one wonder how different presidential campaigns would be conducted without WTA. I imagine candidates would focus on anywhere they could bump the electoral college count in their favor, and the concept of key “swing” states would fade away. I counted the number of states/districts in 2012 where, under my method, the candidate would have at least 2 more votes than their opponent. It was 19. Only 7 states/districts had a differential of 3 or more.  In 2016, those numbers were 20 and 8. That tells me that much fewer of the states/districts lean heavily partisan than typically thought. Our concept of “red” and “blue” states has been heavily influenced by the WTA system.


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