While we watch the GOP candidates vie for their party’s nomination, the Taiwanese (including some of my wife’s family) are voting in presidential elections of their own — a race that could affect the U.S. relationship with the island nation and China:
Taiwanese voted on Saturday for their next president and parliament, an election being closely monitored by China and the United States as they look for stability in the region at a time of political transition for both superpowers.
The votes will be tallied overnight, but I mapped the regional divide from the last election, in 2008, which propelled nationalist Ma Ying-jeou to power. His Kuomintang party has pushed for warmer relations with China. Four years ago, he defeated Frank Hsieh, of the Democratic Progressive Party, which favors independence from China and a distinct identity from the Middle Kingdom.
This map shows administrative areas won by both candidates. Ma’s party is stronger in the north, where business groups in large population centers like the capitol of Taipei generally prefer better relations with China:
This map shows the intensity of Ma’s support in 2008. Again, the regional divide is evident (he won with 58 percent of the vote, so the maps have different totals):
And here’s Hsieh’s vote:
We’ll see what happens in the morning in the contest between Ma and pro-independence DPP candidate Tsai Ing-wen. Though Ma won easily four years ago, this year’s contest is too close to call. This time, a third-party candidate, James Soong, is in the race. He threatens to pull votes away from Ma’s party, as he did in 2000.
More maps tomorrow…
These maps, created by The New York Times four years ago to visualize the Republican results, might be interesting for reference as the returns come in tonight.
Mitt Romney, who lost to Mike Huckabee in 2008, carried the eastern and western portions of the state. Will he tonight? Huckabee carried the middle of the state, including Des Moines. Who will take them tonight? Paul won just one county. Will he improve on that total?
This map displays the raw vote total by county. Larger bubbles represent higher margins of victory. Huckabee won Polk County, which contains Des Moines, by 2,700 votes — one quarter of his victory margin. Who will win it tonight?
View the interactive maps (which also include the Democratic caucuses).
An cool timeline from ProPublica:
The chart below shows pardons granted per year from 1900-2011. Click on a bar to see the number of pardons granted and by which president. The timeline below the chart shows notable pardons.
Built with Timeline Setter.
While in Europe I missed this excellent interactive graphic by Alicia Parlapiano and Amanda Cox of The New York Times. It plots 2008 presidential election results by state with adult residents’ higher education rates:
Some Democrats believe Ohio may no longer be crucial to a 2012 election victory. Instead, states like Colorado and Virginia, with more highly educated voters, may be the Democrats’ must-win states.
I found the graphic, btw, while reading a post by Matthew Ericson — who works with Parlapiano and Cox — in which he argues that maps aren’t always the most effective method for displaying geographic information.
Nice GOP fundraising map posted by Development Seed:
Some candidates are lone stars with remote galaxies of support. Others have broad universal reach. Check out the constellations of conservative support on this new interactive map:
Made with TileMill | Via Alex Yule
A colleague today asked for a spreadsheet copy of the Tribune’s Directory, which has biographical, political and official details about 242 elected officials in Texas (statewide, Legislature, high courts, congress, etc). Turns out only 70 of them are Democrats, whose ranks were thinned considerably after the Republican wave in November:
A cross post from my work blog:
Most people know that Gov. Rick Perry, inaugurated to a third full term Tuesday, has served longer than any other chief executive in Texas history.
What’s remarkable, though, is just how much longer than the state’s previous governors — even those who’ve served during the modern era, according to historical data maintained by the Legislative Research Library.
This bar chart illustrates that longevity, which now spans more than a decade in office. No previous governor has served more than eight years, not even since the early 1970s, when the late Dolph Briscoe became the first governor under a new four-year gubernatorial term.
Perry has served four years longer than his predecessor, George W. Bush, who left early to serve as president. And he’s served twice as long as 40 previous governors, including Ann Richards, Mark White and Bill Clements (who, in fairness, served two non-consecutive four-year terms). Since 1846, the average length of time in office for Texas governors is 3.5 years.
Assuming Perry doesn’t run for president, or leave office early, he will have served Texas longer than the late Franklin D. Roosevelt served as president. FDR’s tenure lasted just over 12 years.