Texas Tribune: Tarrant County A ‘Bellwether’ For Texas Politics

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Posted December 6, 2012 by Andrew McLemore in Blotch
Tarrant County Courthouse. COURTESY OF KEN LUND.Tarrant County Courthouse. COURTESY OF KEN LUND.

Tarrant County’s presidential election results are near identical to the state as a whole, and that’s making media outlets from the Texas Tribune to The New York Times refer to the county as a “bellwether” for Texas’ political winds.

Fort Worth was also one of only four “major cities” where a majority of voters backed Republican nominee Mitt Romney, according to The Atlantic.

Here’s what the New York Times‘ Nate Silver, who correctly predicted the election results for every state, had to say about Tarrant County back in September:

The Dallas-Fort Worth area is home to over six million people, and the two cities are often grouped together. But Tarrant County, which is home to Fort Worth, and Dallas County have separate identities. Dallas is more diverse than Fort Worth, a former cattle town that now revolves around industries like defense.

Non-Hispanic whites are still a slim majority in Tarrant County, which helps make it a much better statewide bellwether than Dallas County. Tarrant County exactly matched the statewide vote in 2008, and was just 1 percentage point more Republican in both 2004 and 2000.

The Texas Tribune echoed that sentiment in a piece published Thursday. Unsurprisingly, State Senator and Democrat Wendy Davis was offered up as proof that the county — and therefore Texas, the most important Republican state in the country — could eventually turn blue.

Tarrant County Democratic Party Chairman Steve Maxwell was only too willing to tell the Tribune that Democratic influence is on the rise:

Just like Tarrant County as a whole, Davis’ diverse, politically divided Senate district is also a microcosm for the state, he said.

“It kind of shows you with the right candidate and the right election and being properly funded, a Democrats can win statewide in Texas,” Maxwell said.


2 Comments


  1.  
    Phil Esteen

    The only way Tarrant County would ever change from ‘Redneck Racist Red’ to ‘Progressive Treehugger Blue’ would be a zombie apocalypse that kills every cantankerous old white guy within 100 miles of the metroplex.




  2.  
    JN

    Curiously, the Mayan calendar allows for just such an “apocalypse” approximately 11 days from now.





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