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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Voting follows old patterns in Missouri

In the weeks running up to the election I became obsessed with CNN's Election Center. With all the results in, I took a look at voting in Missouri. CNN posted an interesting map showing how Missouri voted county by county.

As you can see, Obama only carried three counties. They were St. Louis, Jackson, and Boone. He also carried St. Louis city. St. Louis County is part of the metro area, Jackson is home to Kansas City, and Boone is home to Columbia, where I live part-time and which serves as the setting for my Civil War novel.

Knowing Missouri, I never expected Obama to win there. He did pretty well, though. St. Louis and Jackson are, of course, the most populous counties, and Boone is number 7, so while Obama only managed to carry three counties and St. Louis city, he did get 44% of the popular vote.

What's interesting is that St. Louis, Kansas City, and Columbia were the three main strongholds for Union sentiment during the Civil War. More rural areas (called "Outstate" by Missourans) tended to be for the South. They supported the Democrats, who back then were a conservative party that wanted to preserve the status quo. If you wanted to find supporters of the liberal alternative to the Democrats, the Republicans Party, you had to look in St. Louis, Kansas City, and Columbia.

A sweeping generalization, I know, but one that still has a ring of truth 150 years later. The three cities are still liberal and the rest of the state is still conservative, all they've done is switch parties!


  1. It doesn't surprise me, Sean. If a person doesn't travel and broaden their horizons, their thinking doesn't always change that much. Not everyone likes to leave their comfort zone. Nice comparison, enjoyed your observation.


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