NCP2 Blog

NCGA House Deep Dive - 5/17/13

Last month, we explained NCP2’s PVI (Partisan Voter Index) scores for North Carolina’s 13 congressional districts. These ratings measure each district’s tendency to elect Republicans or Democrats (for a complete explanation of PVI, see this blog post).

Now we continue the discussion with NCP2 PVI ratings for North Carolina House districts.

Of the 120 NC House districts, PVI scores landed on the Republican end of the spectrum in 77 House districts. That is, 77 districts had “R+” PVI scores, meaning they were more Republican-leaning than the state as a whole. To give one example, HD-88, an urban/suburban district in Charlotte represented by freshman Republican Rob Bryan, has a PVI rating of “R+4.” Republicans, on average, perform 4 points better in HD-88 than average Republican candidates do statewide. HD-78, a rural district spanning Randolph and Moore counties, received the highest Republican-leaning PVI: R+25.

On the Democratic end of the scale, 42 districts have “D+” PVI ratings. The highest Democratic-leaning PVI score is HD-106, an urban district in Charlotte represented by freshman Democrat Carla Cunningham. HD-106 is rated at D+35.

A single district, HD-2, has a PVI rating of “EVEN,” meaning average Republican and Democratic candidates performed the same in the district as statewide Republicans and Democrats.

While a handful of Democrats represent “R+” districts and a few Republicans represent “D+” districts, to say that 77 districts favor Republicans and 42 districts favor Democrats would be, essentially, correct. And indeed the make-up of the House is currently 77 Republicans and 43 Democrats.

PVI’s in competitive House districts ranged from D+4 to R+8 in 2012. Of the 9 House contests decided by fewer than 5 points, all were in districts within that competitive range. Republican candidates won 7 of those districts, Democrats won 2.

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