Turks & Caicos Islands 2012 Election Results: The Story behind the numbers.                                              B...
Before the elections were held it was widely speculated that Mrs. Cartwright-Robinson would get thehighest tally based on ...
Electoral District level. In short, Mrs. Cartwright-Robinson got at a minimum of 263 persons who did notvote for the PDM a...
for him at the All Island level. This is clear in the case of Blue Hills and Wheeland – Dr. Ewing’s childhoodhome – where ...
In addition to all of the above, the way the electoral boundaries were drawn also benefited the PNP, asthe PDM large popul...
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Turks & Caicos Islands 2012 General Election results - The Story Behind The Numbers

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Turks & Caicos Islands 2012 General Election results analysis prepared by E. Jay Saunders

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Turks & Caicos Islands 2012 General Election results - The Story Behind The Numbers

  1. 1. Turks & Caicos Islands 2012 Election Results: The Story behind the numbers. By E. Jay SaundersBy now everyone is aware that the PNP won the 2012 General Elections 8 seats to the PDM 7 seats. PNPwon 6 seats at the Electoral District level and 2 at the All Island level compared to the PDM 4 seats at theElectoral District level and 3 at the All Island level.Although the PNP won the Government, it only obtained 44.9% of the votes cast at the Electoral Districtlevel – i.e. the Popular Vote – which was 331 votes less than the PDM, which got 50.1% of the PopularVote. For reference, the PPP got 4.9% of the Popular Vote and the sole Independent candidate got 0.1%.Together, this brings the total number of votes cast at the Electoral District level to 6,311 – not includingthe 41 rejected ballots.Where the numbers tells a fascinating story is at the All Island level where 30,428 votes were cast forthe following 11 candidates (in the order of highest to lowest): 1. Sharlene Cartwright Robinson (PDM): 3,437 2. Rufus Ewing (PNP): 3,290 3. Derek Taylor (PDM): 3,197 4. Washington Misick (PNP): 3,135 5. Josephine Connolly (PDM): 3,057 6. Carlos Simons (PNP): 2,945 7. Oswald Skippings (PDM): 2,902 8. Samuel Harvey (PDM): 2,893 9. Wayne Garland (PNP): 2,814 10. Royal Robinson (PNP): 2,718 11. Oswald Simons (IND): 235 1
  2. 2. Before the elections were held it was widely speculated that Mrs. Cartwright-Robinson would get thehighest tally based on her popularity and the amount of non-PDM supporters who were publicly statingthat they would give her a vote. And based on the final results, she achieved that by obtaining 3,437 ofthe total votes cast; thereby giving her the #1 spot and 147 votes ahead of 2nd place finisher RufusEwing, who got 3,290 votes.However, to truly understand the impact that Mrs. Cartwright-Robinson and the other All Islandcandidates individually had on the election, we need to see how much cross party appeal eachcandidate had, and if any candidate helped or hurt his/her party.To get behind the numbers, I created a Popularity Index with the assumptions that: a) If a candidate ishighly popular and everyone voted for him/her then their vote tally should equal to the total number ofpersons who voted successfully at Electoral District level, which was 6,311 thereby giving the candidatea 100% Popularity Index rating, and b) To help their party an All Island candidate would need to get ahigher percentage in the Popularity Index than his/her party got in the Popular Vote. For example, 3,437voters cast a vote for Mrs. Cartwright-Robinson out of the 6,311 who voted, which gives her a PopularityIndex rating of (3,437/6,311) = 54.5%. In other words, approximately 55% of those who voted at theElectoral District level voted for her. Based on the Popularity Index the candidates rank as follows: 1.Sharlene Cartwright Robinson (PDM): 54.5%, 2. Rufus Ewing (PNP): 52.1%, 3. Derek Taylor (PDM): 50.7%,4. Washington Misick (PNP): 49.7%, 5. Josephine Connolly (PDM): 48.4%, 6. Carlos Simons (PNP): 46.7%,7. Oswald Skippings (PDM): 46.0%, 8. Samuel Harvey (PDM): 45.8%, 9. Wayne Garland (PNP): 44.6%, 10.Royal Robinson (PNP): 43.1%, 11. Oswald Simons (IND): 3.7%Now if we take into consideration that 50.1% of all voters voted for the PDM at Electoral District leveland 44.9% did the same for the PNP, we can clearly see which candidate helped/hurt their party and byhow many votes. As stated earlier, to help his/her party an All Island candidate would need to get ahigher percentage in the Popularity Index than his/her party got in the Popular Vote – let us call thisdifference “Cross-Over Appeal”. For clarity, the All Island candidate would need to get more votes thanthe total votes cast for his/her party at the Electoral District level. For example, Mrs. Cartwright-Robinson got 54.5% in the Popularity Index rating compared to the 50.1% the PDM got in the PopularVote, which gives her a net positive difference of 4.2% or 263 more votes than the PDM got at the 2
  3. 3. Electoral District level. In short, Mrs. Cartwright-Robinson got at a minimum of 263 persons who did notvote for the PDM at the Electoral District level to vote for her. That’s Cross-Over Appeal!Based on their Cross-Over Appeal, the All Island candidates rank as follows: 1. Rufus Ewing (PNP): 7.2%/457 additional votes 2. Washington Misick (PNP): 4.8%/302 additional votes 3. Sharlene Cartwright Robinson (PDM): 4.3%/273 additional votes 4. Carlos Simons (PNP): 1.8%/112 additional votes 5. Derek Taylor (PDM): 0.5%/33 additional votes 6. Wayne Garland (PNP): -0.3%/19 less votes 7. Josephine Connolly (PDM): -1.7%/107 less votes 8. Royal Robinson (PNP): -1.8%/115 less votes 9. Oswald Skippings (PDM): -4.2%/262 less votes 10. Samuel Harvey (PDM): -4.3%/271 less votesTaking all of the above into consideration, the following arguments can be made in my humble opinion:Country At LargeThe country is still very much polarized along political lines. Despite all the talk of sharing votes, very fewpersons did so, with more PDM’s doing so than PNP’s. Although I was with the PNP team in Londonwhen the final details of the new Constitution was “negotiated”, I am still not sure what the BritishGovernment objective was when they requested that 5 seats in Parliament be All Island seats. My beliefis that they wanted to make it easier for Independent candidates to be able to win a seat in Parliament,however, if this was the case, the voting public clearly showed that it is very much party orientated,voting in many cases “Straight down the line.”Dr. Rufus EwingAmong the 10 party affiliated All Island candidates, Dr. Ewing has the most Cross-Over Appeal, which isseen by the fact that he got at a minimum 457 persons who did not vote for the PNP at the ElectoralDistrict level to vote for him. These additional votes were necessary to him and they had a materialimpact on the election results, as without them Dr. Ewing would not have made it into the Top-5. HisCross-over appeal is more than likely due to the fact that he comes from what would be viewed as a“PDM family”, thereby making it easier for persons who voted PDM at the Electoral District level to vote 3
  4. 4. for him at the All Island level. This is clear in the case of Blue Hills and Wheeland – Dr. Ewing’s childhoodhome – where he got 556 All Island votes compared to the PNP 389 Electoral District votes. Being theChairman of the Civil Servants Association also helped – although this cannot be verified through thisanalysis – as it would have also made it easier for those Civil Servants who voted PDM at the ElectoralDistrict level to give him a vote.Washington MisickMr. Misick clearly still has a lot of respect among the voting public as he gained strong support rightacross the country. His popularity is shown by the fact that he has the second highest Cross-over Appealwith 4.8%, which allowed him to get at a minimum 302 persons who did not vote for the PNP at theElectoral District level to vote for him. These additional votes were necessary to him and they had amaterial impact on the election results, as without them Mr. Misick would not have made it into theTop-5.Sharlene Cartwright-RobinsonMrs. Cartwright-Robinson was by far the most popular PDM candidate and the most popular All Islandcandidate overall. Right across the country the PDM base gave her their full support, and her popularitycarried right past the political lines where she was able to get at a minimum 273 persons who did notvote for the PDM at the Electoral District level to vote for her. Mrs. Cartwright-Robinson popularity washelped by the fact that she was the most vocal in the Consultative Forum, and the public generally sawher as “their voice” and “as having the public interest at heart”. The PDM base clearly view Mrs.Cartwright-Robinson as a prize possession, as even without the additional 273 votes she got she wouldhave still made it into the Top-5.Samuel Harvey and Oswald SkippingsThe reason why I am including these two together is because their results were material and it affectedthe outcome of the election. The poor showing of these two candidates reversed the gains that the PDMmade in the Popular Vote and gave the PNP the election victory. This can be clearly seen in the fact thatat a minimum 271 persons who voted for the PDM at the Electoral District level did not give Mr. Harveya vote, with 262 persons doing the same to Mr. Skippings. If those PDM’s who withheld their votes fromthese gentlemen had voted for them, they would have gotten at a minimum a total of 3,164 votes each,which would have put both of them in the Top-5 – replacing Washington Misick and Josephine Connolly.This would have given the PDM a total of 4 seats at the All Island level and the government with a totalof 8 seats overall. 4
  5. 5. In addition to all of the above, the way the electoral boundaries were drawn also benefited the PNP, asthe PDM large popular support was isolated in pockets, which despite allowing them win big in someareas, made it difficult for them to turn the same into a majority of seats won at the Electoral Districtlevel.E. Jay Saunders 5

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