Fun With Maps: North Dakota Senate Election Edition

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Because it is winter break and I have some free time before the holiday onslaught of family and food begins, I was tooling around Datawrapper and saw they have county maps for North Dakota (and all 50 states actually).  This is pretty cool so I made two maps of the 2012 and 2018 ND Senate races.  In 2012 Heidi Hetikamp won by 161, 337 votes for 50.2% of the electorate.  In 2016 she only won 144,376 votes and 44.27% losing to the idiotic Trump acolyte Kevin Cramer.  What struck me about both maps is the political geography of North Dakota.  The eastern part of the state is more democratic than the western part with the center of the state looking more moderate.  I don’t have any explanation for this aside from anecdotes and folk wisdom.  The western part of the state is more cattle and oil country while the easter part of the state is more farm country.  It’s possible this explains the political divide, but I am not sure why or in what way.  Nevertheless, it somewhat confirms a thought I once had that instead of splitting up the Dakota Territory into North and South Dakota a perhaps more interesting split would have been West and East Dakota.

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