Featured letter Better way to understand candidates' vote totals

Print Article

As shown below, on April 2, 2019, candidates for the Beloit School Board received votes which were publicized in various media along with a percentage figure that is a candidate's total divided by the total votes cast for all candidates. These percentages are misleading and counter-productive.

John Wong, 2343 (21.18%); Megan Miller, 1791 (16.19%); John Winkelmann, 1749 (15.81%); Pam Charles, 1736 (15.69%); Phillip VanLandingham, 1276 (11.53%); Ami Christophersen, 1199 (10.83%); Torie Champeny, 900 (8.135%); write-in, 68 (06.41%).

Total votes cast: 11,062

Since each voter was allowed to vote for four (4) candidates (even though some presumably chose only three or fewer), the number of voters selecting candidates turns out to be far fewer than the 11,062 number (like perhaps approximately one fourth of 11,062 or about 2765). This lower divisor into the voting total of each candidate yields a more informative documentation of support. It produces a descriptive vote percentage for them in this instance that is four times the published figures. When voters can choose multiple candidates, the number of people voting divided into the total votes cast for a candidate is the important computation if we want to get a meaningful percentage.

So, the winning candidates wind up with percentages as follows: Wong (84.72 %), Miller (64.76%), Winkelmann (63.24%) and Charles (62.76%).

These figures document support for the candidates that is more informative than the earlier low percentages. This is important, because it shares a clearer, accurate description of what happened in the election, and it is important because it documents community support for our newly elected leaders. The earlier low percentage numbers did not do this. They were misleading. In fact, our winning candidates have backing from more than half of the voters.

Tom Warren

Beloit

The former Beloit City Council president and retired Beloit College professor's analysis is well taken, and we thank him for it. We will report accordingly in future elections. - WRB

Print Article

Read More Columnists

Online journalism reshapes Capitol press corps

November 04, 2019 at 10:00 am | MORE journalists than ever may be covering the Capitol. The new 2019-20 Blue Book lists 42 Capitol reporters for news organizations. But dozens of reporters don't work out of the Capitol's second...

Comments

Read More

Task Force confronts 'retirement crisis'

October 28, 2019 at 10:42 am | THE numbers in the first paragraph of Gov. Tony Evers Oct. 21 executive order were scary. "In the United States, the typical working-age household has less than $3,000 in retirement savings and the ...

Comments

Read More

Andrews-led WEAC dominated Capitol

October 21, 2019 at 10:16 am | WHEN he ran the state's largest teachers union, Morris Andrews joked that - from his Nob Hlll Road office on Madison's south side - he could monitor Republican Gov. Tommy G. Thompson's Capitol office...

Comments

Read More

Insiders ponder post-Fitzgerald Capitol

October 15, 2019 at 9:59 am | SINCE 2004, Sen. Scott Fitzgerald has either led or been a leader of Wisconsin Senate Republicans. He's been majority leader for eight years. But Fitzgerald is now running for the 5th District seat ...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(608) 365-8811
149 State Street
Beloit, WI 53511

©2019 Beloit Daily News Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X