October 26, 2008


Housing data reinforces Obama's edge: Polling, housing data suggest Americans are voting their home values this election cycle. (Jonathan Lansner, 10/25/08, The Orange County Register)

[I] compared what states were trending for each candidate vs. how housing did in each state. I weighted my results by Electoral College votes, so we'd see the political and economic clout of the more populous states. And here's what we found:

* In the 17 states that are "solid" or "leaning" McCain, according to RealClearPolitics, my spreadsheet tells me that the weighted average home price fell 1.6 percent in a year. That's relatively strong when you note that First American LoanPerformance's overall national index, weighted in the same manner, was down 6.5 percent in the past year.

* In the 24 states plus D.C. "solid" or "leaning" toward Obama, my spreadsheet tells me that the weighted average home price fell 9.1 percent. That's significantly worse than McCain strongholds, as 13 of the 17 worst state home markets are seen by RealClearPolitics in Obama's camp.

* And those seven toss-up states? Curiously, housing performance fell right between the two candidates real estate portfolios, so to speak: weighted average losses for the too-close-to-call states ran 6.4 percent. [...]

Mark Baldassare, CEO of the Public Policy Institute of California, says "it makes perfect sense that there'd be strong correlations" between voting patterns and economic realities like home prices.

"One issue has become absolutely dominant: the economy," says Baldasarre, whose group regularly polls Californians on a host of issues. "I don't think it's about what the candidates are saying. On the economy, I'm not sure they're saying things drastically different. It's about perception."

The housing rebound alone is going t make Americans feel better about the direction of the country next year.

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Posted by Orrin Judd at October 26, 2008 11:29 AM
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