Sunday, November 18, 2012

Marion County Township Board Races: 2000 v. 2012

If one wants to see how far the townships have changes partisan wise, one need only look at the results of the township board elections 2000 v. 2012.  As way of background, every township in Marion County is divided up into seven districts, equal in population.  After each census, the party in power on the township board draws the maps to last, supposedly, until the districts are redrawn again after the next census.

In 2000, this was the results of the township board races:

Center:  0 Republicans, 7 Democrats
Decatur:  7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Franklin:  7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Lawrence 4 Republicans, 3 Democrats
Perry:  7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Pike:  4 Republicans, 3 Democrats
Warren:  4 Republicans, 3 Democrats
Washington:  6 Republicans, 1 Democrat
Wayne:  6 Republicans, 1 Democrat

Even though the Republicans redrew the maps after that election, it didn't seem to help in Pike or Wayne.  Here is what happened in the 2004 election:

Center:  2 Republicans, 5 Democrats
Decatur: 7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Franklin: 7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Lawrence 5 Republicans, 2 Democrats
Perry: 7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Pike:  1 Republican, 6 Democrats
Warren:  3 Republicans, 4 Democrats
Washington:  3 Republicans, 4 Democrats
Wayne:  5 Republicans, 2 Democrats

Then in 2008:

Center:  1 Republican, 6 Democrats
Decatur: 7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Franklin: 7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Lawrence 4 Republicans, 3 Democrats
Perry: 7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Pike:  0 Republican, 7 Democrats
Warren:  4 Republicans, 3 Democrats
Washington:  4 Republicans, 3 Democrats
Wayne:  1 Republican, 6 Democrats

The party in control after that election redistricted leading to the result in the 2012 election:

Center: 1 Republican, 6 Democrats
Decatur: 7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Franklin: 7 Republicans, 0 Democrats
Lawrence 4 Republicans, 3 Democrats
Perry:  6 Republicans, 1 Democrats
Pike: 0 Republican, 7 Democrats
Warren:  2 Republicans, 5 Democrats
Washington:  3 Republicans, 4 Democrats
Wayne: 1 Republican, 6 Democrats

Unfortunately earlier years were not available on-line.  If I would have been able to go back another few elections, I would have shown how Republicans were 7-0 on every township board, except for Center Township.  It is shocking how quickly things flipped in Marion County

What I find most interesting is Washington Township, which is now fairly heavily Democratic.  Township offices in Washington Township are no longer competitive.  Still the Republicans have held a majority on the township board for much of the time covered in my analysis and in 2012, came within a 154 votes of getting the fourth seat on the seven seat township board.  Both after the 2000 and 2010 census it was Republicans drawing the township board maps and apparently they drew them quite well.

Looking at the 2012 election, none of the Pike Township Board seats were competitive.  Some of the Wayne Township Board seats were reasonably competitive, but Republicans lost every one of them except one in which Republican Lisa Bentley prevailed by four votes.  Out in Warren Township, Republican Craig Cordi won a race by 38 votes or the only seat the Republicans would have won in on that township board would have been that held by Republican Jody Tilford who ran for re-election unopposed.  Lawrence continues to be a competitive township; Republicans won 4 of the 7 seats on the Lawrence Township Board.

Interestingly, in the only township board race in Perry where the Democrats fielded a candidate, the party won with Democrat Jason Fletcher beating Republican Joyce Warren.  This I believe is the first time the Democrats have held a township board seat in one of the southern townships (Franklin, Perry and Decatur.)  The Democrats did not field a township board candidate in Decatur or Franklin. Decatur is particularly interesting because 2008 results suggested the Democrats fielded an opponent in all seven Decatur districts and came reasonably close to winning a few of those seven seats.


artfuggins said...

That Perry Township board election results have not been certified. Do not be supposed if the result changes.

Scott Coxey said...

Right Art. It would have to be a fluke for a Democrat to win...Jeez.

Paul K. Ogden said...

The Perry Township race was won by 46 votes, 1.4% of the vote. That's probably going to hold up unless there was a major screw up. With the computerized counting system, you don't have the errors you used to have on the unofficial count that you used to.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Not sure what part of the township that district is in. But, unlike neighboring Franklin which is more lightly populated, there are portions of Perry which are competitive.

artfuggins said...

Numerous inspectors in Perry reported receiving packets of absentee ballots after the polls closed and the voting machines were closed and printing the results. Who knows what those ballots produce if they are counted??

sjudge said...

Finally, some idiot stumbled onto a reason for Township Government to exist - it can be used to make predictions about furture Township elections...

Scott Coxey said...

Boom! Certified!