Inside the Secret World of the Data Crunchers Who Helped Obama Win

Data-driven decisionmaking played a huge role in creating a second term for the 44th President and will be one of the more closely studied elements of the 2012 cycle

  • Share
  • Read Later
Daniel Shea for TIME

"The cave" at President Obama's campaign headquarters in Chicago

In late spring, the backroom number crunchers who powered Barack Obama’s campaign to victory noticed that George Clooney had an almost gravitational tug on West Coast females ages 40 to 49. The women were far and away the single demographic group most likely to hand over cash, for a chance to dine in Hollywood with Clooney — and Obama.

So as they did with all the other data collected, stored and analyzed in the two-year drive for re-election, Obama’s top campaign aides decided to put this insight to use. They sought out an East Coast celebrity who had similar appeal among the same demographic, aiming to replicate the millions of dollars produced by the Clooney contest. “We were blessed with an overflowing menu of options, but we chose Sarah Jessica Parker,” explains a senior campaign adviser. And so the next Dinner with Barack contest was born: a chance to eat at Parker’s West Village brownstone.

(MORE: Four More Years: Obama Wins Re-election)

For the general public, there was no way to know that the idea for the Parker contest had come from a data-mining discovery about some supporters: affection for contests, small dinners and celebrity. But from the beginning, campaign manager Jim Messina had promised a totally different, metric-driven kind of campaign in which politics was the goal but political instincts might not be the means. “We are going to measure every single thing in this campaign,” he said after taking the job. He hired an analytics department five times as large as that of the 2008 operation, with an official “chief scientist” for the Chicago headquarters named Rayid Ghani, who in a previous life crunched huge data sets to, among other things, maximize the efficiency of supermarket sales promotions.

Exactly what that team of dozens of data crunchers was doing, however, was a closely held secret. “They are our nuclear codes,” campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt would say when asked about the efforts. Around the office, data-mining experiments were given mysterious code names such as Narwhal and Dreamcatcher. The team even worked at a remove from the rest of the campaign staff, setting up shop in a windowless room at the north end of the vast headquarters office. The “scientists” created regular briefings on their work for the President and top aides in the White House’s Roosevelt Room, but public details were in short supply as the campaign guarded what it believed to be its biggest institutional advantage over Mitt Romney’s campaign: its data.

On Nov. 4, a group of senior campaign advisers agreed to describe their cutting-edge efforts with TIME on the condition that they not be named and that the information not be published until after the winner was declared. What they revealed as they pulled back the curtain was a massive data effort that helped Obama raise $1 billion, remade the process of targeting TV ads and created detailed models of swing-state voters that could be used to increase the effectiveness of everything from phone calls and door knocks to direct mailings and social media.

(Election 2012: Photos From the Finish Line)

How to Raise $1 Billion
For all the praise Obama’s team won in 2008 for its high-tech wizardry, its success masked a huge weakness: too many databases. Back then, volunteers making phone calls through the Obama website were working off lists that differed from the lists used by callers in the campaign office. Get-out-the-vote lists were never reconciled with fundraising lists. It was like the FBI and the CIA before 9/11: the two camps never shared data. “We analyzed very early that the problem in Democratic politics was you had databases all over the place,” said one of the officials. “None of them talked to each other.” So over the first 18 months, the campaign started over, creating a single massive system that could merge the information collected from pollsters, fundraisers, field workers and consumer databases as well as social-media and mobile contacts with the main Democratic voter files in the swing states.

The new megafile didn’t just tell the campaign how to find voters and get their attention; it also allowed the number crunchers to run tests predicting which types of people would be persuaded by certain kinds of appeals. Call lists in field offices, for instance, didn’t just list names and numbers; they also ranked names in order of their persuadability, with the campaign’s most important priorities first. About 75% of the determining factors were basics like age, sex, race, neighborhood and voting record. Consumer data about voters helped round out the picture. “We could [predict] people who were going to give online. We could model people who were going to give through mail. We could model volunteers,” said one of the senior advisers about the predictive profiles built by the data. “In the end, modeling became something way bigger for us in ’12 than in ’08 because it made our time more efficient.”

Early on, for example, the campaign discovered that people who had unsubscribed from the 2008 campaign e-mail lists were top targets, among the easiest to pull back into the fold with some personal attention. The strategists fashioned tests for specific demographic groups, trying out message scripts that they could then apply. They tested how much better a call from a local volunteer would do than a call from a volunteer from a non–swing state like California. As Messina had promised, assumptions were rarely left in place without numbers to back them up.

MORE: TIME Staff: Live Twitter Reactions

  1. Previous
  2. 1
  3. 2
289 comments
tonio09
tonio09

I bet 99% of that $1 billion came from super wealthy business owners / arms manufacturers / financial bankers that ultimately benefit the most from government handouts. So about 1% came from the "average joe" that these scientists aimed to model. With respect to the election, unfortunately once a measure becomes the goal itself, it stops being a useful measure. Obama now has another 4 years to start running simulations for the next campaign.  

richard40
richard40

So he has all these genius IT guys for his campaign, but he cant get anybody competent to do the obamacare website.  It just shows where obamas priorities are, campaign/propaganda/elections 100%, competently running the gov and caring about the country 0%.

Fechtmeyer
Fechtmeyer

Unfortunately, brilliant insights like women want to have a dinner date with George Clooney and the wardrobe budget of Sarah Jessica Parker have absolutely nothing to do with doing the job of the Presidency.  

BobParkman
BobParkman

I've been in the big data space for 15 years, and the benefit claims are highly overrated.  I think the greater effect for Obama in 2012 was that he deployed the IRS and Justice Department as weapons against political opponents.  The voter revolt in 2010 that handed control of the House to Republicans and reduced the senate majority significantly was stymied from making additional gains in 2012.

JimTemple
JimTemple

In the future, when the truth is written about this election, it won't be about tech people, Obama's tech people really aren't that good, look at the Obamacare website.  No the truth will be about pulling out all the stops and doing what was necessary to win an election.  it will be about a complicit press that did everything possible to help (Candy Crowley comes to mind).  It wouldn't hurt so much of the President had done something, anything, positive since then but all we got was the same divisive politics we had before, a terrible health care plan, no fixes for the border, high unemployment and a Senate that continues to stop any legislation that could possibly fix our problems.  Thanks, Pravda and Izvestia. 

laughinplace
laughinplace

These guys did a superb job. It was fun to watch the many daily emails from "big names" flood my inbox and realize that the responses were being tracked to see who garnered the most replies and made the most $$. So I made sure I replied to the name I wanted to get the credit - Barack Obama - even if I had to go back a couple of days to find an email sent as if from him. Also noticed that my email address was analyzed - the address is of a university, so I was getting emails asking me to contact my "fellow students." Made me smile, cuz I'm a retiree of that university. Something they obviously had not thought of.     

yaypancakes
yaypancakes

President Obama, can your data team help me figure out this Yahoo! problem that's ruining my Wednesday?

JohnDahodi
JohnDahodi

I do not think too much about the real help of the digital tools rather than the stupidity of the GOP leadership in the House and Senate who did not bothered about the middle class and poor while fighting four long years for millionaires and billionaires (ii) Tea-Party goons, most of them belonged to the middle class and poor fought for the millionaires rights and above all severe bankruptcy of Romney to select another right wing radical as his running mate and accepting all the right wing radical social, political and economical programs but last 4 weeks changing his position just like any cheap prostitute change her beds. All these issues have contributed to the stunning lost of Romney and surprise win of Obama.

Janna
Janna

As someone among hundreds who participated in this campaign, I can attest to the extreme difficulty of it.. Dedication and a willingness to work hard  was the basis for thousands upon thousands  of calls to the swing states by volunteers .. It took bravery and education in order to speak to people directly with intelligence..This process took place in all sincerity for over a year just for volunteers in the states.. We were terrified the Right would ask us to move our clocks back to 1950..

We have come so far,.. we could not imagine a country so diverse being under the control of such haters who look down  women, minorities and gays.. we come in all colors , we help others who are not as successful, we do not hide our money offshore and we pay our taxes no matter what we make.

CHAP1022
CHAP1022

Great article demonstrating the power of data driven decisions. Instead of disbanding Obama's campaign team, why not retain them with a new mission - put their analytical skills to work on the fiscal cliff, national debt, and most importantly developing a pathway for bipartisan consensus.

TonyMcClay
TonyMcClay

"Cat out the Bag", Great article and discussion.  Personally the candidate I voted for was elected, but the point of this story is the "Big Data" is not in the conversation of the average person.  It promises new insights and innovation based on facts and analytical analysis.  Analysis and data mining to meet a business (Or in this case Political need).  I have always known the world would be introduced to this niche genre which promises much to many people by running simulations based on facts and using that information to make operational decisions to change an outcome.  The skills and experience in Statistics, Analytical Analysis, Big Data (Hadoop, NOSQL), Real Time Complex Event Processing, and all these skills are needed to drive decisions for all parts of life and business. 

DavidKamm
DavidKamm

Another example of the candidate winning by fooling the gullible public. He had NOTHING to recommend him, this time around, and he had no more than that the first time around.

godhelpusplease
godhelpusplease

Bring on the Communism that Obama wants.  Bring on the instability, guns and killing Obama wants.   Obama wants to destroy the USA with his class warfare.  That is what Obama wants.  He and his family will fly off with his big pension, million dollar speaking fees and live like a king and queen.  Obama has made the USA the laughing stock of the entire world. Obama’s presidency will be a movie in the future.A movie how a community organizer pulled the wool over enough people’s eyes to win the presidency and bring a great nation to its knees.

PamelaGrow
PamelaGrow

A fascinating article with many lessons, not only for future campaigns, but for nonprofit organizations as well.  When I saw so many comments, I was excited to read what others thought.  Instead I'm treated to the same barrage of ridiculous lies and innuendo from people who appear to be "educated" by Fox "News."  The better man won.  Get over it already and start figuring out why sane people left your base.

EvaGonzalez
EvaGonzalez

The man that bamboozled USA and the WORLD ! ( INCLUDING DONALD TRUMP ) ---------

Obama wrote this biography of himself to promote his first book back in 1991. Again, this was written in 1991 before he was even thought of as a competitive politician. Barack Obama says it himself he was born in Kenya and raised in Hawaii.

Either he lied (why?) or we are living through one of the truly greatest cover-ups & FRAUD of our time.SEARCH: Obama Admits Born in Kenya - Part 2 HARD EVIDENCESee all pertinent videos and SHARE

KateFernstrom
KateFernstrom

Unlike many of the posters here I am only going to comment on the results of the data mining. I found it extremely annoying to be one of those targeted for "personalized" email contact. Yes, I was for Obama, no I am not going to respond to many, multiple attempts per day get me to donate $3 to possibly have dinner with the President. No to Michelle. No to Sherrod. No to Sarah Benzing. I wasn't fooled by "personalized" emails from any of these people who nothing about me. I don't want dinner. I want a J O B, but I'm a white, middle aged female and I have a degree in communication and a better shot at winning one of those mythical dinner seats with George Clooney than I do at finding one. Unemployment may be at 7.9% but it's at 15% for women and probably higher than that for white women in my age group. I'm not a taker. I've worked hard all my life, paid taxes, given to charity and asked for no handouts. I didn't vote for Romney because I did not believe he would create jobs that would support me. I voted for Obama because I believe in human rights, even for women which the right doesn't seem to believe in. Those emails just got deleted. FIND ME A J O B!!!

Ingmar
Ingmar

this country needs to give a HUGE thanks to OBAMA and his computer geeks! our future is far more fair, honest and equitable thanks to these people!  

FacelessCommenter
FacelessCommenter

@JimTemple The tech people on Obama's campaign and the tech people on ObamaCare are completely different. A key factor is the federal procurement process, which Obama happily foisted on us but steered well clear of when he wanted to get a job done for himself.

richard40
richard40

@JohnDahodi  And what exactly did Obama ever do for the middle class, other than kill their jobs with his regulations.  As for supporting millionaires, are you aware that far more millionaires, mostly from Wall Street, Silicon Valley, Green Tech, and Hollywood, donated to Obama than to the repubs, and he gave them their money's worth with cronyistic kickbacks.

richard40
richard40

@Janna  That and corruptly using the IRS to cripple similar grass roots people in the tea party.  And plenty of money from rich dem donors did not hurt either.  And of course constantly playing the race card.

Rubben
Rubben

@Janna ¡You said it!, all races: latinos, blacks, arabs, gays, comunists etc have united against the hated whites. There is to much hatred among the diversity. It didn't matter about the trillon of dolar deficit of the budget, more important was that one not white were in the white house.

richard40
richard40

@CHAP1022  Why would Obama ever do that.  It simply does not fit his priorities, which are campaign/propaganda/elections 100%, competently running the country and promoting national unity 0%.

NatashaParkins
NatashaParkins

@TonyMcClay I totally agree with you 100%! Those who are not in the business of data collection and analysis have no idea how these things work....they don't understand that reality is not based on the opinions of the homogenous groupings we almost always surround ourselves with.

Janna
Janna

@DavidKamm  You seem to talk down to the Electorate like your  candidates who offered nothing but contradictions and pain to Americans and you make the  assumption  all Americans are dumb..even in light of this brilliant Obama campaign!! Which is why your team lost.. Disdain for everything and everyone except your good ol' boys.. I'm excited you will lose big again!And extinction is around the corner.

richard40
richard40

@PamelaGrow  The better campaigner won.  That did not make him the better man for governing, as we are now finding out to our sorrow.

SAINTS
SAINTS

@EvaGonzalez Are you nuts??? Your republican party protects us"WE THE RICH"" AND SCREW THE POOR! BY THE WAY , we are all awared that it is because HE IS BLACK!! John Mccain ws born in Panama it never made the news!!! OOH BLACKS!1

AngrySpatz
AngrySpatz

@EvaGonzalez No one cares anymore for this nonsense - don't you get it?Continuing with this is simply silly.

TonyMcClay
TonyMcClay

@KateFernstrom I read your post, and will respond to your Data mining, "Personalized" email campaign.  I understand that finding a job is difficult for everyone and maybe more so for your demographic.  But I want to let you know there are many opportunities that are growing in the field of Data Analysis, especially around the term "Big Data."  Insights and communicating these insights have a very very bright future and will continue to grow.  The same technology that targeted you with those emails that annoyed you is very very beneficial for companies that can take advantage of it and communicate it.  I am on the technical side of this "NEW Job opportunities," but I know how important it is for the future, not just Political Elections.  It's an evolution of the Internet, mobile application, Big Data and analytics that will drive the communication.  So please get and stay involved.

marquesdjones@att.net
marquesdjones@att.net

I hope and pray you find a job. I believe you will. These are the times in life you must have faith. Don't put your trust in Obama. Pray to God who will provide all that you need in this life. Keep the faith. I voted for President Obama to but, my hope is not in him but, in God.

RitaHoeffner
RitaHoeffner

@KateFernstrom Why exactly do you think the right doesn't believe in women's rights?  I don't want you to spout rhetoric back at me, I want cold hard facts, proof that the right doesn't like or want women to be successful.  I just don't see it, but then I might have blinders on, so my mind is open and I want to know.

RitaHoeffner
RitaHoeffner

@Ingmar So honest and fair that Obama received more than 100% of the vote in some of the swing states.  Humm.....the math seems a little fuzzy there, but then everything seems a little fuzzy and skewed where Obama is concerned....perhaps it has something to do with the fact that he hails from Chicago.

richard40
richard40

@Rubben @Janna  So basically the dems formed a get whitey coalition.  Great way to promote racial healing.

richard40
richard40

@Janna @DavidKamm  Obama is the one talking down to you.  Constantly making false promises, like most transparent ever, promoting racial unity, and if you like your health plan you can keep it, and then laughing at you as you swallow yet another lie from him.

richard40
richard40

@romerjt @godhelpusplease  The article did not contradict the comment, it just said Obama used some great IT people to promote his evil agenda.  Pity he did not use those same IT people to get the obamacare website right.  But then that did not fit obamas priorities, since it involved competently governing, and not winning a campaign.

Janna
Janna

@RitaHoeffner @KateFernstrom  Incredible that you can say 'out loud' that have not educated yourself.. The GOP and Fox depend on low information people like you who are too lazy to read about women's rights in this election. Thank heavens most women are unlike you and will fight for themselves and their daughters' future.

hlthy1
hlthy1

@RitaHoeffner I agree with BenFox. It's absolutely women's reproductive rights. From my point of view, conservatives want to punish women who accidentally become pregnant while the man who helped to create the situation slips out the back door, unnoticed and unpunished. People forget that one of the pro-choice choices is to have the baby and raise him/her, along with the choices to put the baby up for adoption or terminate the pregnancy. There needs to be a choice rather than the vanilla mandate: you will have that baby, whether you want to or not (and if you still want to terminate the pregnancy, I'm going to shove this device up into your vagina and describe the parts I see by order of The State. Maybe you should provide a name for the "baby" before we terminate, huh?). I'm the mother of four children and I will attest to the fact that pregnancy and childbirth are, at best, extremely uncomfortable, and at worst, life-threatening. I wouldn't blame anyone for not wanting to go through with it. And to answer questions from people who excitedly ask pregnant women about the gender of the baby, the name, etc. when that woman is planning to give the baby up for adoption? Awkward. How do you think the woman feels about this intrusion? It's really nobody's business except for the person who has to deal with it. The business of terminating a pregnancy is also nobody's business--especially a random politician's.

BenFox
BenFox

@RitaHoeffner

Reproductive rights. Equal pay for women. These are some of women's rights Republicans oppose.

richard40
richard40

@Janna @RitaHoeffner @KateFernstrom  Women's rights of course meaning you can force others to pay for your birth control instead of buying it yourself, and you can kill your unborn child with no restrictions (even no protections for the mothers safety), and with Gosnell's help even do it after he is born.  That and establishing kangaroo courts on our campuses with no due process, no defendant protections, and pretending those feminist inquisitions dispense justice.  No thanks.  As for low info voters, have you actually interviewed any of the countless welfare drones, and politically and historically clueless college students, who vote dem.  Most of them cant even name the founders, while if you go to a tea party group you will hear people discussing the federalist papers and constitutional law.

RitaHoeffner
RitaHoeffner

@Janna And let's hope most women are NOT like you and jump to conclusions and attack someone without knowing or even trying to understand what they are saying.  No wonder this country is so divided.

RitaHoeffner
RitaHoeffner

@Janna Janna, I'm neither lazy or uneducated.  I don't watch Fox and I'm not affiliated with the GOP.  Unlike you, I was trying to open a civil and hopefully productive conversation about women's rights and how those on the left feel the GOP stifle them.  It would appear from your condescending post, that you are the one in need of some education.  As stated in my previous post I support a woman's right to choose and I will and have fought for that right for myself and my daughter.  However, if you think this whole war on women is solely about reproductive rights, I'm shocked and outraged that you would say that 'out loud'.  You my dear, need to remember that we are ALL Americans first.  We are all on the same side, we just hold somewhat differing opinions.  I don't see as how the conservatives repress women's rights.  Some hold the idea of Pro-Life, but not all.  So wise up and don't lump us all in together.  

SAINTS
SAINTS

@hlthy1 @RitaHoeffner We the Republicans ; WE love unborn babies!! but we hate the 47% AND PEOPLE ON WELFARE , SCREW  THE POOR. We love FOETUS and  DEATH  PENATIES BUT SCREW OBAMACARE, ITS SOCIALISM!! are  we  for real???We love freedom to do bussiness and no freedom for women in their bedroom (contraceptvies)!  We love to protect unborn babies but screw your mum if she is poor and takes WELFARE(TAKERS, 47%) . We love' binders full of woman" BUT NOT FOR EQUAL PAY! THESE REPUBLICANS ARE IN DENIAL!!! THE RED STATES TAKES MUCH MONEY FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMEN T THAN BLUES STATES

JRu4Life
JRu4Life

@hlthy1 @RitaHoeffner Oh, where to begin. If "reproductive rights" mean to you that you have unlimited access to abortion - up to and even AFTER birth - and that you get free birth control (which isn't expensive anyway) then you are delusional. Do you realize what you're doing by aborting all your kids? You're not going to be able to pass on your radical beliefs since there won't be any children to pass them on to. Obama thinks that, even if a baby is lucky enough to survive a botched abortion, that you should put it on a shelf and leave it to die. He thinks that partially delivering a baby from it's mother and then jamming a pair of scissors into his neck to kill him before he's even completely outside of his mother's body is perfectly OK. There are others who advocate that you should be able to kill your children up to the age of 2 (look it up). Have you ever looked at pictures of aborted children? Do you know what the doctors have to do after they've dismembered a child and sucked it out of his mother's body? They have to lay all of the parts out on the table and re-assemble the child to make sure they got everything - otherwise the mother (well, accomplice) could get an infection and die (this happens often). Then, there's China, with their one-child policy. Will you be OK when Obama institutes a rule like that here? I could see that happening. I bet the Chinese didn't think it could ever happen to them - until it did. I also bet that the German people never thought they would be sent to ovens to be gassed - until they were. Obama is beyond evil. He is not going to improve the economy, unemployment is not going to go down, there will be more terrorist attacks on our soil and elsewhere and Americans will die, just like the men who died in Benghazi because Obama did not give them any protection and support. Economists are predicting a 20% plunge in the stock market and rising gas prices coming in the next month or so. His own Secretary of Energy has stated that the goal is for us to have high gas prices like they do in Europe. Obama is lowly chipping away at all of our civil liberties, signing hundreds and hundreds of executive orders to circumvent the legislative process called for in the Constitution (which he hates, by the way). And now you'll all respond and say that I "need to educate myself" - well, I have and I am terrified. I have always given to charity, helped many, many women in crisis pregnancies, and run a food pantry at my church. I will no longer do any of these things. Everyone is on their own and needs to fight and hang on to whatever they have - until Obama comes to take it to redistribute it to others. Good luck.

RitaHoeffner
RitaHoeffner

@hlthy1 @RitaHoeffner I think most liberals view this issue from an all or nothing standpoint.  While I mostly identify as a conservative on fiscal issues, I support a woman's right to choose.  BUT and it's a big but, I don't think my tax dollars, not one thin dime should pay for any one's abortion.  Due to the religious issues surrounding abortion, tax dollars should not subsidize or pay for any abortion.  I realize that contraception seemed to be a large issue of this election, and while I understand the Catholic point of view (I'm not Catholic), I personally don't have a problem with health insurance companies being ASKED to pay for contraception.  I do NOT think it should be mandatory.  If a company thinks it's important, then seek out a policy that covers it, if not, then don't...free market at it's best.  The rest of your argument is superfluous to the issue at hand.  So, NO, I don't think the state or the government should be allowed into our bedrooms or our bodies.  However, liberals want a nanny state, they want everything paid for by the government; therefore, the government feels it has the right to tell you what to do.  It's a huge caveat of getting FREE stuff.

RitaHoeffner
RitaHoeffner

@JohnHarvey @RitaHoeffner @Ingmar Sir, I'm no loser.  The only loser in this last election was our country.  I'll survive.  If you cannot be bothered to look up information for yourself then why bother to comment.  You are talking about something you know nothing about if you refuse to do your own research.  I could tell you the answers, but you would continue to claim I am lying.  Believe what you want....but for a FACT, he got more than 100% of the vote in some counties.  

JRu4Life
JRu4Life

@JohnHarvey @RitaHoeffner @Ingmar "In all Black precincts why would he (Romney) have gotten any votes?" Wow - racist much? Was there a law passed that if you're black you were required to vote for Obama? You see, this is the problem. Most of the black folks voted for him just because of the color of his skin - and that is one of the saddest things of all.  HE is the one who wants to keep everyone (not just blacks) in chains on the government plantation. There is information ALL OVER THE NEWS  about the many places where more than 100% of registered voters voted and/or voted for Obama - how does that work? It doesn't. Here's a link to just one story from Ohio:  http://visiontoamerica.com/12872/voter-fraud-obama-won-108-of-registered-voters-in-ohio-county/

JohnHarvey
JohnHarvey

@RitaHoeffner @JohnHarvey @Ingmar You are the one who said, "...Obama received more than 100% of the vote in some of the swing states." I am well aware of how the electoral process works. I have been an officer of the local Democratic Party for years and a frequent poll watcher.

Fine if you want to make it about counties or precincts. Name some counties or precincts where President Obama got more than 100% of the vote. Unless you give specific examples you are just making things up if you do not like the term blowing smoke. How about lying?

As for where I get my news, I do not even own a TV. No, I do not watch MSNBC. I get my news from a variety of sources including the New York Times, the Washington Post, the BBC, Time, and many others. One I do not get "news" from is Fox.

What do you mean, "If I told you the state and counties, you would not learn anything."? Voting records are public information. I expect you mean you do not know any state or counties. Is that just something you heard on Fox News?

I do not know of any counties where Romney did not get any votes. I do know in Philadelphia, PA there were 5 precincts where Romney did not get any votes. In all Black precincts why would he have gotten any votes? I am sure if you searched hard enough you could find precincts where President Obama did not get any votes. I can think of several counties in rural Pennsylvania where he probably got precious few votes, if any. Bradford County (my birthplace) has not voted for any president who was not a Republican since 1856. They were Republican before Lincoln.

Unless you give specifics, you are just talking to make yourself feel less like a loser.

RitaHoeffner
RitaHoeffner

@JohnHarvey @RitaHoeffner @Ingmar  I'm not sure how you cannot know these things, but there are more to counting votes than just State level.  You do understand that states are divided up into these things called counties, then precincts.  Drill down into the numbers and you'll find several places where Obama received more than 100% of the vote.  Also, if you look hard enough you'll find entire counties - many in fact, where Romney received not one single vote?  Really?  If I told you the states and counties, you wouldn't learn anything.  Please turn OFF MSNBC, step away from the TV and do some real research on your OWN.  Look things up and stop relying on someone else for your news.  If you insist on using the TV for news, then try a channel OUTSIDE of the US - they tend to be a lot more unbiased, try the BBC or Al Jazeera.  Inform yourselves people.   and NO JohnHarvey, I'm not blowing smoke - perhaps you might be?