Map of the Day: Parsing the Prop 8 Vote

More

When a state like South Dakota outlaws abortion or a state like Vermont legalizes gay marriage, it's because most voters in that state agree on that position. But when California makes a decision on a major cultural issue, it's like taking a sample of the nation.

Twelve percent of Americans live in California, and the state has the world's fifth largest economy. "It's a nation-state really," says Michael Barone. Ideologically, it's left-of-center, but it has enough political crosscurrents to be a good case study.

Let's take a look at how California voted on Prop 8 in 2008, which of course banned gay marriage and was struck down by Judge Vaughn Walker on Wednesday.

Prop. 8 was opposed mostly in Pelosiland (Frisco), Boxerland (Marin), Oakland, Berkeley, Silicon Valley, Wine Country, the Hippie Coast (Humbolt, etc...), and Santa Barbara.

Prop. 8 was supported in Reaganland (Inland Empire), Nixonland (Orange), San Diego, Palm Desert, Pomboland (Stockton area), McCarthyland (Kern), the Central Valley, Shasta Cascade, and pretty much everywhere else.

Unsurprisingly, Republicans areas largely supported it and Democratic areas largely opposed it, but dense suburban counties such as Los Angeles and Sacramento proved the tipping point.

Prop 8 Map

Jump to comments
Presented by

Patrick Ottenhoff has been writing The Electoral Map blog since 2007. A former staff writer for National Journal Group and project manager at New Media Strategies, he now attends Georgetown's McDonough School of Business. More

Patrick Ottenhoff attends Georgetown McDonough School of Business in the Class of 2012. He previously served as a project manager in the Public Affairs Practice of New Media Strategies and was a staff writer for National Journal Group. Patrick has been writing The Electoral Map blog since 2007. As the name implies, the blog covers news and commentary at the intersection of politics and geography, but it also analyzes the stories, people, culture, sports, and food behind the maps and the votes. Patrick is a native Virginian and graduate of Union College in New York. You can follow The Electoral Map on Twitter and Facebook, and follow Patrick on YouTube.
Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

The Time JFK Called the Air Force to Complain About a 'Silly Bastard'

51 years ago, President John F. Kennedy made a very angry phone call.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Politics

Just In