A Mackerras pendulum for the 2016 US presidential election

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The 2016 US Presidential election has been a big debating topic in Australia over the last few months. A lot of people I know are wishing for a Trump-Sanders showdown in November. I'm not certain whether it would happen myself, but the possibility is very interesting: a non-politician running as a Republican versus a capital S-Socialist running as a Democrat.

So I was wondering "Where's the Mackerras pendulum?" Mackerras pendulums are built for two-party electoral systems such as the Australian one, where it is easy to line electorates up in their likelihood to vote for one side or another. If you assume a uniform swing in voting (doubtful, but let's go with it), then you can see how much of a swing is necessary for one party or another to win the election.

Mackerras pendulums weren't used for US Presidential Elections before 2004, because it made no sense to do. But 2000 onwards, you had the coagulation of the Electoral College into "Red States" and "Blue States", and thus it made sense to line the electorates up from solid Democrat (e.g., D.C.) to solid Republican (e.g., Utah).

Nobody seems to have done it for 2016. "Ricardian ambivalence" did it for 2012, and Mackerras himself did one for 2004 (where he predicted a landslide victory for Kerry, apparently.) Here is a first draft of a Mackerras pendulum for 2016.

 (R) Seat Votes Swing (D) (D) Seat Votes Swing (R)
538 D.C. 3 41.82% 3 538 Utah 6 -24.02% 6
535 Hawaii 4 21.36% 7 532 Nebraska, 3rd 1 -21.305% 7
531 Vermont 3 17.80% 10 531 Wyoming 3 -20.41% 10
528 New York 29 14.09% 39 528 Oklahoma 7 -16.77% 17
499 Rhode Island 4 13.73% 43 521 Idaho 4 -15.955% 21
495 Maryland 10 13.04% 53 517 West Virginia 5 -13.38% 26
485 Massachusetts 11 11.57% 64 512 Arkansas 6 -11.845% 32
474 California 55 11.56% 119 506 Kentucky 8 -11.345% 40
419 Maine, 1st 1 10.70% 120 498 Alabama 9 -11.095% 49
418 Delaware 3 9.32% 123 489 Nebraska (AL) 2 -10.89% 51
415 New Jersey 14 8.91% 137 487 Kansas 6 -10.86% 57
401 Connecticut 7 8.67% 144 481 Tennessee 11 -10.2% 68
394 Illinois 20 8.44% 164 470 North Dakota 3 -9.815% 71
374 Maine (AL) 2 7.65% 166 467 South Dakota 3 -9.01% 74
372 Washington 12 7.44% 178 464 Louisiana 8 -8.605% 82
360 Oregon 7 6.05% 185 456 Nebraska, 1st 1 -8.325% 83
353 New Mexico 5 5.08% 190 455 Texas 38 -7.89% 121
348 Michigan 16 4.75% 206 417 Alaska 3 -6.995% 124
332 Maine, 2nd 1 4.28% 207 414 Montana 3 -6.825% 127
331 Minnesota 10 3.85% 217 411 Mississippi 6 -5.75% 133
321 Wisconsin 10 3.47% 227 405 South Carolina 9 -5.235% 142
311 Nevada 6 3.34% 233 396 Indiana 11 -5.1% 153
305 Iowa 6 2.91% 239 385 Missouri 10 -4.69% 163
299 New Hampshire 4 2.79% 243 375 Arizona 11 -4.53% 174
295 Pennsylvania 20 2.70% 263 364 Georgia 16 -3.91% 190
275 Colorado 9 2.69% 272 348 Nebraska, 2nd 1 -3.585% 191
266 Virginia 13 1.94% 285 347 North Carolina 15 -1.02% 206
253 Ohio 18 1.49% 303          
235 Florida 29 0.44% 332          

I might have calculated wrong, but it seems like the key state for 2016 is Colorado - highlighted in yellow); it went Democratic in 2012. That party could lose Virginia and Ohio and Florida (although for its own sake, it shouldn't), but lose Colorao, and it's game over. That's about a 2.69% swing.

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