Exclusive: 2016 Presidential in Florida by MSA

We’ve seen just about every imaginable breakdown of votes from the 2016 Presidential Election. But it was surprising to see no breakdown by MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area) as defined by the Census Bureau.  From my vantage point, the below chart which we’ve worked out using votes for only the two major party candidates paints an ugly picture for Democrats. The party has been reduced to small portions of the state in terms of winning at the top-of-the-ticket and while two decades ago, Democrats down ballot could comfortably run above the national ticket if they had a strong local base, today if anything the national ticket provides the high-water mark for Democrats outside of some small rural counties. Down ballot, Democrats have consistently in the last four elections run worse than at the top of the ticket throughout much of the state.

The below chart also paints a picture of a party that has ignored medium-sized metro areas and suburban communities outside of South Florida and Orange & Osceola counties. A few notes – the Miami-Fort Lauderdale MSA was combined with the West Palm Beach-Boca Raton MSA in 2003, but retains the Miami-Fort Lauderdale name. We used MSA’s here not CMA’s (Combined Metropolitan Area).

The margins Donald Trump took out of most of these medium sized areas of the state help explain how he won Florida by over 100,000 votes. It is worth remembering Hillary Clinton was about as weak a nominee as the Democrats have produced in the post-war era against a non-incumbent GOP President so perhaps these numbers represent a low point for the D’s.

Two party vote only:

MSA Population (2010 census) Trump Clinton
Miami-Fort Lauderdale 5,564,635 862,999 (35.8%) 1,541,373 (64.2%)
Tampa-St Petersburg-Clearwater 2,783,243 705,646 (51.8%) 661,565 (48.2%)
Orlando- Kissimmee 2,134,411 456,501 (44.1%) 579,009 (55.9%)
Jacksonville 1,345,596 493,005 (63.0%) 286,843 (37.0%)
North Port-Sarasota 702,281 225,779 (57.3%) 168,736 (42.7%)
Cape Coral- Fort Myers 618,754 191,141 (60.6%) 124,725 (39.4%)
Lakeland-Winter Haven 602,095 157,216 (57.3%) 117,182 (42.7%)
Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville 543,376 181,620 (60.3%) 119,525 (39.7%)
Deltona-Daytona Beach 494,563 142,763 (56.7%) 108,793 (43.3%)
Pensacola-Ferry Pass-Brent 448,991 143,469 (65.5%) 75,512 (34.5%)
Port St Lucie 438,095 123,430 (58.7%) 86,970 (41.7%)
Tallahassee 367,413 74,935 (38.4%) 119,763 (61.6%)
Ocala 331,298 107,710 (62,9%) 61,958 (37.1%)
Naples-Marco Island 321,520 105,527 (63.4%) 60,941 (36.6%)
Gainesville 264,275 53,324 (41.9%) 74,827 (58.1%)
Fort Walton Beach-Crestview-Destin 180,822 71,118 (75.1%) 23,711 (24.9%)
Panama City-Lynn Haven 168,852 62,010 (74.1%) 21,689 (25.9%)
Punta Gorda 159,978 60,196 (64.3%) 33,421 (35.7%)
Sebastian-Vero Beach 141,994 48,564 (62.6%) 28,997 (37.4%)
Homassasa Springs 141,236 54,372 (70.4%) 22,765 (29.6%)


  1. Is a candidate weak if another nation is waging a campaign against them and for their opponent? Or would that be akin to ganging up? jes askin


    1. We were concerned in 2008 about how defined she was to the national electorate. By 2016, with further shifts away from the Dems she was the wrong nominee. As to this point we have no proof that Russian hacking influenced the electorate – certainly they tried to influence it but where Clinton lost badly in this election were places where obvious Dem weakness existed prior to 2016 but where the party did little to arrest the decline – my guess is Russian hacking had to little to do with white rural working class voters tat supported Obama in 08 and 12 voting for Trump in 16.


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