Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Some Good Election Maps

I really dislike most U.S. election maps. The binary red-blue scheme that dominates most maps is very misleading (see last post) and obscures more interesting patterns. 

I particularly like this map from the Washington Post showing how the political "winds" are shifting.

The red "gusts" to the right show greater Republican support from four years ago while the blue leftward lines show greater support for Democrats. Purple vertical lines are places that saw little change. The legend is complicated but the patterns are pretty clear.

The leftward drift in the Great Plains and diverging areas of the south central states are patterns you won't see on a typical red/blue map. By contrast here is the same map showing the 2016 changes (from 2012). 

This is a nice "scrollytelling" article. When you scroll down enough you can see the two maps animated.

The New York Times, in addition to the usual red-blue offerings has this size of lead map.

One of the best things about this approach is the subtlety of the colors. The clever choice of size of lead makes it so the viewer has a better sense of the population and how certain states were won or lost. Some of the biggest counties have smaller circles because the size of the lead was less than in other places. Largely empty counties are de-emphasized because land doesn't vote.

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