Votes by ward

The vote totals by each of the city's 15 wards, which generally include about 6,500 residents.

The deeper the color, the higher the percentage of votes for the winner. Legend:
+ Kathy Sheehan: green
+ Frank Commisso Jr: blue
+ Carolyn McLaughlin: red

Votes by election district

Each ward includes a handful of smaller election districts that each range in population from a few hundred to more than 1,500 people. Even so, many election districts register very small vote totals.

Again color intensity points toward the percentage of votes for the winner. Legend:
+ Kathy Sheehan: green
+ Frank Commisso Jr: blue
+ Carolyn McLaughlin: red

Vote total tree map

Any representation of numbers also ends up skewing the information is some way. One of the problems with geographic maps like the ones above is that they don't do a good job of representing the relative influence each ward or district has due to the number of votes cast there. A district with a lot of geographic area -- but few votes cast -- can look more influential than it really is.

So here's a different way of looking at things, called a tree map. It's basically a square pie chart. It displays the "size" of the city's wards and election districts by how many votes were cast there in the mayoral primary. Each ward/district is then color coded by the winner of that area. Legend:
+ Sheean: teal
+ Commisso: blue
+ McLaughlin: yellow

By the way: You can click each ward block to zoom in on the election districts. To zoom out, right click (or on a Mac track pad, use two fingers and click).



A breakdown of the voting in the Albany Democratic mayoral primary, up close

albany democratic mayoral primary 2017 election district map clip

The Albany mayoral primary, one more time: Here's an up-close geographic breakdown of the voting in the Albany Democratic primary, which was won by Kathy Sheehan. As you know, it is the de facto election for the office because of the large Democratic enrollment in the city.

Above is a clip from a map of individual election districts and unofficial vote counts (that now include absentee ballots).

Are there clickable maps? You know there are clickable maps.

Maps

They're at the top in the large format -- click or scroll all the way up.

A few things

There's not a lot that hasn't been said already, so we'll keep this brief:

+ The vote percentages as they now unofficially stand:
- Kathy Sheehan: 49.37 percent
- Frank Commisso Jr: 33.01 percent
- Carolyn McLaughlin: 15.26 percent

+ The vote total for the mayoral election: 13,469. As we've said before, that's a small slice of the city. It's worth having a discussion about ways to shake up the primary process in an attempt to get more people to vote and/or to set up some sort of runoff process.

+ See also: The look at the ward-by-ward vote totals by Amanda Fries in the Times Union.

+ The voting data used for these maps is via a FOIL request to the Albany County Board of Elections. The data was in a pdf that didn't render text as text. We used optical character recognition to extract the numbers, so it's possible there are some errors.

Here are the numbers in csv if you'd like them.

Comments

0022 ALBANY WARD 3 ED 2

three votes cast. There's what, only three buildings in the district that may even have apartments? Wow!

What a lost opportunity. Essentially half the dems in the city voted for the mayor and half against. A slightly stronger SINGLE candidate might have won. They'd need to better the performance of Commisso and McLaughlin combined by less than 2 percentage points to win.

I think we're finally, after 100 years, at a point where it might be possible for a great candidate to win an actual competitive election. That's normal in many places in the USA but unheard of in Albany. Stand by for 2021.

By the way we got some truly awful new common council members. Real loss there.

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