These are my observations on the Pennsylvania primary.

Obama did slightly less well in Philadelphia than expected. He pulled in 65% of the vote and got a net of about 140,000 votes out of Philadelphia County. I expected him to get closer to 70%. His underperformance cost him about 20,000 votes. In the greater scheme of things, this was not hugely significant, but it cost him a chance to narrow the margin.

What really cost Obama was what happened in the northern suburbs of Bucks and Montgomery Counties. Obama simply got crushed in Bucks, giving up 29,000 votes. I think most people expected him to poll well in Bucks, perhaps even winning it. I also expected Obama to win Montgomery County easily. Instead he lost it 51-49. In Delaware and Chester Counties he won 55-45, but he wound up losing the suburbs decisively because of the lopsided result in Bucks. No one predicted this. The exit polls showed Obama winning the Philly suburbs with 57% of the vote. If he had won with 57%, he would have received about 240,000 votes in the burbs. Instead, it appears that he will get about 205,000. That’s a loss of another 35,000 votes. So, between Philly and the Philly suburbs, Obama underperformed expectations by about 55,000…or a 110,000 swing in Clinton’s favor. Whether Mayor Nutter and Governor Rendell are responsible, or whether it was just a lot of white people lying to pollsters, I don’t know.

Regardless, even outside of the Philly area, Obama came up about 100,000 additional votes short. Some of that comes from a very disappointing result out of Allegheny County (Pittsburgh) where Obama gave up another 27,000 votes. But the bulk of the loss came from one rural county after another giving Clinton over 65% of the vote. In addition, Clinton truly cleaned up in Luzerne County (Wilkes-Barre), pulling 33,000 votes out of that county alone. Clinton snagged another 26,000 votes out of Lackawanna County (Scranton).

The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton area was a kind of homebase for Clinton because her father grew up there, but I didn’t expect her to do anywhere near this well there.

In any case, we can try to find explanations for the results, but these are the areas where Obama underperformed. He did worse than the exit polls suggested he would do, and I have no easy answer for that either.

It doesn’t look like Bob Casey and Patrick Murphy’s endorsements helped at all, as they would have been most helpful in the Scranton and Bucks County areas. I didn’t expect those endorsements to work miracles, but I thought they would be at least somewhat helpful and there is no evidence that they were.

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