This one comes to us from Taegan Goddard's Political Wire, which tells us, "According to very interesting CNN analysis, Wisconsin is most representative of the American population because it "comes closer than any other to state-by-state averages on 12 key measures." The statistics included "four that measure race and ethnicity, four that look at income and education, and four that describe the typical neighborhood in each state."
For years, politicians who put the presidential calendar together have wrestled with the question of which states really are the most typical or more representative of the country," [CNN Polling Director Keating] Holland said. "Here is one way to determine that."
So, what makes Wisconsin so special -- or, to put it another way, what makes Wisconsin so average? It is about as close to the average state as you can get on most of the 12 measures included in this study.
For example, let's take the number of college graduates who live in each state. Wyoming is dead center among all 50 states, with 30.22% of its population holding a college degree. In Wisconsin, the number is 30.24%.
Or take housing values. On a state-by-state basis the median housing value, in North Carolina, is just over $111,600. The median housing value in Wisconsin is roughly $111,500. The Badger State is also fairly close to the state-by-state average on population growth, home ownership, population density, and the number of blacks and Hispanics who live there. The number of whites and blue-collar workers who live in Wisconsin is much further away from the average state's figures on those measures, but not enough to keep the Badger State from claiming the top spot.
If cheeseheads are representative of the nation as a whole, the GOP is headed for a real letdown in November. In the senate, Herb Kohl is basically a shoe-in. Republican congressman Mark Green is leaving his seat to run for governor - a race he's polling behind in, despite Gov. Jim Doyle's anemic approvals. ElectionProjection.com considers Green's seat a 'weak GOP hold', but I think they might be a little optimistic.
The latest Badger Poll, from the University of Wisconsin, shows that no GOP candidate has a chance in hell at the Attorney General's office, despite a high profile democratic split in that race.
In April, Bush's approves were 31%. In April, 31 Wisconsin communities voted on advisory referenda calling for withdrawal of troops in Iraq - the antiwar vote was a landslide 61%. Obviously, the war will be an issue in the elections.
An issue that republicans are chained to. If the nation looks like Wisconsin, then republicans are screwed.