Thursday, October 22, 2020

A Look at Local Candidates Facebook and Twitter Followings in 2020

Four years ago I looked at local and national candidates' Facebook and Twitter followings and how they corresponded to their election results.  Then, the candidate's Facebook followings predicted the winner in 8 of 9 races I looked at.  In 2018, Facebook followings only predicted the winner in 5 out of the 9 races I looked at.  This year I thought I would take break from Coronavirus and take a look at local candidates' Social media followings on Twitter and Facebook.

RCP Avg %

Facebook Following

Twitter Following

Biden (D)

50.8

  3,264,947

11,373,690

Trump (R)

42.8

30,388,485

87,335,714

Jorgenson (L)

2.5

     475,414

      172,827

Hawkins (G)

0.8

       28,834

        62,771

The first contested election in the area is of course the Presidential.  I only found the candidates national Facebook and Twitter pages so I will compare their national pages to their national poll averages from Real Clear Politics.  The table above shows that Biden considerable lags behind Trump in Facebook and Twitter followings but is ahead in the national poll averages.  Biden's social media presence has not increased by much since the primaries.

Facebook Following

Twitter Following

Joyce (R)

2,363

1,670

Rowley (D)

991

7,514

The race for the PA 13th congressional district is between  incumbent Republican John Joyce and Democrat Todd Rowley.  There is public no poll data for this race so I will have to wait for  the election results.  I can see that Joyce has a larger presence on Facebook but not on Twitter.  One of the platforms will predict the winner.

 

Facebook Following

Twitter Following

Dougherty (D)

 

               990

5,681

Langerholc (R)

 

            1,770

             273


The 35th PA state senate district is contested by incumbent Republican Wayne Langerholc and Democrat Shaun Dougherty. As with the congressional race, there is no poll data and there is a split advantage for the candidates between platforms.the results will determine which is right.

Facebook Following

Twitter Following

Burns (D)

             3,277

1,782

Terndrup (R)

590

63


The last race I'm looking at is the PA 72 State House race between incumbent democrat Frank Burns and Republican Howard Terndup.  Burns has an advantage on both Facebook and Twitter.  We'll see how it corresponds to the election results.

In this COVID-19 election it would seem that a larger social media presence would give a candidate the advantage.  Biden's presence was not as strong as Sanders or Warren yet Biden won the nomination (just as the pandemic was begining).  I'm sure Trump will do everything he can to win.

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