Obama vs. Patrick

The two maps below show how the votes for Barack Obama in last week’s Massachusetts presidential primary stacked up to the votes for Deval Patrick in the 2006 gubernatorial primary. Both ran as "change" candidates and there were similar patterns of support for both candidates geographically. Obama received 512,000 votes, considerably more than Patrick’s 452,000 votes, but that wasn’t enough in the higher-turnout presidential race. (Hillary Clinton received 705,000 votes, or almost three times the total of Chris Gabrieli, who finished second to Patrick in 2006.)

Obama was especially successful in getting new votes in rural areas and in high-income suburbs, consistent with national trends. But Clinton did much better getting out the vote in manufacturing towns and in the state’s smaller "Gateway Cities." For example, Obama lost a big chunk of Patrick voters in Southbridge, a working-class community with a large Latino population (20 percent of the total).


In terms of raw votes, Obama did get new voters out in Boston, Cambridge, and Somerville, even if he wasn’t able to improve on Patrick’s percentage of the total vote. (Obama got 53 percent in Boston, well below Patrick’s 58 percent.) But he was really hurt by a loss of Patrick votes in the cities of Worcester, Fall River, and New Bedford — all of them in the districts of US Reps. Jim McGovern and Barney Frank, who both endorsed Clinton. Another big drop came in the town of Plymouth, the home of state Senate President Therese Murray, who made her displeasure known when Ted Kennedy snubbed Clinton in favor of Obama.