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Press release: UK to provide extra £12 million in UK aid for survivors of Cyclone Idai

first_img making sure families have access to clean water to drink and wash, which will also help to stop the spread of deadly diseases providing food and food vouchers to those affected ensuring that those that have been left homeless are able to access safe shelter. Speaking from Maputo, Head of DFID Mozambique Cate Turton said: There are images and videos of UK aid arriving in Maputo yesterday (20 March) available here. We only released this footage this afternoon. Please credit “Department for International Development” if used. For bids or interview requests, please call the DFID Press Office on 0207 023 0600.The UK is to provide an extra £12 million of support, including food, water and shelter, to the survivors of Cyclone Idai in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe.International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt announced the new funding today (Wednesday) – taking the UK’s additional support for victims of the cyclone to £18 million.Yesterday, over 7,500 emergency shelter kits and 100 family tents, all funded by UK aid, arrived in Mozambique for onward distribution to families who have had to flee their homes.International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt said: The UK is to provide an extra £12 million of support, including food, water and shelter for the survivors of Cyclone Idai. Yesterday, over 7,500 emergency shelter kits and 100 family tents, all funded by UK aid, arrived in Mozambique for onward distribution to families who have had to flee their homes. Today’s package takes the UK’s total support to help the victims of the cyclone to £18 million. Notes to editors Today’s announcement of £12 million of UK aid in addition to Monday’s (18 March) announcement of £6 million, taking the UK’s total support to the crisis to £18 million. In addition to this week’s new support, DFID already provides core funding to international aid organisations on the ground, including UN agencies and the Red Cross movement, which are providing emergency humanitarian relief as part of the international response in the region. In Zimbabwe, UK aid has ensured health, medical and nutrition supplies were in place before the cyclone struck and have reached affected communities in Chimanimani. The UK also prepositioned vital relief items in Mozambique to support the response to a humanitarian emergency, including: hygiene kits, hardware items to help repair homes, water purifiers and solar lamps. DFID is also the biggest donor to the START Fund, which has allocated £400,000, to enable NGOs Trocaire and HelpAge International to meet immediate needs such as clean water and shelter in Malawi. UK aid is also supporting the World Food Programme (WFP) to feed 130,000 people for two weeks in Mozambique by distributing emergency food and food vouchers for people to use at local markets. In Malawi, existing UK support will help the WFP provide cash transfers so that 140,000 people can feed themselves until the end of March. Telephone 020 7023 0600 This is one of the biggest humanitarian disasters that this region has ever faced, and we’re doing all that we can to get aid to those desperately in need. Our absolutely priority at the moment is to get food, water and other critical supplies to affected communities, many of which are cut off because of damage to roads and infrastructure. UK aid will be used to help meet immediate needs on the ground across the countries affected, including: I’ve been extremely moved by the images I’ve seen of this devastating cyclone which has caused misery for millions of people across Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe. This is, undoubtedly, one of the biggest natural disasters to ever hit the region, and our thoughts remain firmly with the victims of this cyclone. Today’s UK aid package is a sign of the UK’s commitment to do all we can to make sure those in desperate need of humanitarian relief have access to life-saving essentials, including food, water and shelter. The UK was one of the first countries to respond to this disaster. We are keeping the situation under close review. Email [email protected] General media queries (24 hours) If you have an urgent media query, please email the DFID Media Team on [email protected] in the first instance and we will respond as soon as possible.last_img read more

Our county benchmarks will help you watch the 2020 election results like a pro

first_imgWe’re including Montana because of its very important Senate race, where Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock could eke out a victory against Republican Sen. Steve Daines. Montana isn’t expected to be close in the presidential race; polls here have shown the margin in high single digits, which is a dramatic improvement over 2016, but that’s still a steep climb to 50%. Winning in Montana requires running up the score in the college towns (Missoula and Bozeman, in Gallatin County) while staying close in the more blue-collar cities (Billings and Great Falls, in Yellowstone and Cascade Counties, respectively) in order to stave off the heavily red rural counties.NORTH CAROLINA MILWAUKEE14.869/3165/29 FULTON10.673/2668/27 EL PASO11.535/6134/56 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results LIVINGSTON2.234/6432/62 KALAMAZOO2.655/4253/40 BREVARD3.440/5738/57 SCOTT5.555/4347/45 SARASOTA2.444/5442/54 MIAMI-DADE10.465/3463/34 BROWARD8.868/3166/31 DOUGLAS6.738/6037/55 ARAPAHOE10.954/4453/39 Georgia has not one but two Senate races this year, and modeling to 50% is especially important in this one because state law mandates that if no candidate wins a majority, the top two finishers have to advance to a runoff, both in the special election and the regularly scheduled one. The presidential race isn’t subject to that requirement, but in Georgia, it’s shaping up to be one of the closest races in the nation.One step to winning the Peach State is to run up the score in Atlanta and its closest suburbs. Interestingly, Fulton County, where most of Atlanta is, is also home to a lot of affluent, mostly white areas and isn’t quite as blue as two of its neighboring counties that have larger African American majorities.The other step is to win in the Atlanta area’s affluent, but rapidly diversifying, outer suburbs in Cobb and Gwinnett Counties—preferably in the upper 50s if not higher. (Stacey Abrams hit those same benchmarks above in Cobb and Gwinnett but still fell a smidge short in the 2018 gubernatorial race anyway, thanks to Republican strength in the rural areas and, probably, GOP voter suppression.) For more detail on this pathway, my colleague Steve Singiser has written a full-length piece on what to watch in Georgia.IOWA LAKE2.146/5340/55 POLK3.043/5541/55 – Advertisement – RENO2.141/5628/63 JEFFERSON11.850/4749/42 LEHIGH2.653/4650/45 ADAMS7.051/4650/41 WOODBURY2.845/5537/57 AIKEN3.642/5534/61 INGHAM2.762/3560/33 PICKENS2.329/6821/74 GUILFORD5.461/3758/38 FRANKLIN10.666/3260/34 HARRIS14.661/3954/42 WASHTENAW3.970/2968/27 RAVALLI4.542/5828/66 PHILADELPHIA11.584/1682/15 PINELLAS5.249/4847/48 CHATHAM2.760/3955/40 ORANGE5.862/3560/35 OTTAWA3.033/6431/62 DUVAL4.649/4847/48 There’s no Senate race in Ohio, but we’re including it because of its perennial bellwether status in the presidential race. While Biden’s main task is to crush it in the Democratic strongholds of Cuyahoga and Franklin Counties (Cleveland and Columbus, respectively), you might also keep an eye on more blue-collar counties like Lorain and Mahoning (the latter is home of Youngstown).These were Democratic strongholds in the past and gave Clinton only very narrow wins in 2016, but they now seem poised to snap back significantly with Biden at the top of the ticket. Biden will also want to come close in Lake County, Cleveland’s more affluent affluent suburbs, though it hasn’t moved much in the Democratic direction during the Trump era, unlike a wide variety of suburbs elsewhere in the country.PENNSYLVANIA MONTGOMERY7.161/3858/37 ROCK2.656/4352/41 VOLUSIA2.843/5441/54 LUZERNE2.242/5939/58 Colorado appears to have graduated from swing-state status to safely blue at the presidential level, which is pretty amazing for a state that was red for decades until 2008 (with a brief blip in 1992). But it does have a key Senate race, although Democrat John Hickenlooper is looking pretty likely to defeat Republican Sen. Cory Gardner. With much of the state’s population concentrated in the Front Range, Hickenlooper’s easiest path means winning decisively in Denver and Boulder, winning narrowly in the inner suburbs (Adams, Arapahoe, and Jefferson Counties), and not getting blown out in Colorado Springs (El Paso County) or Denver’s exurbs (Douglas and Weld Counties).FLORIDA SEMINOLE2.449/4847/48 BLACK HAWK4.158/4150/43 BOULDER6.871/2770/22 WAYNE16.268/3166/29 BUTLER3.240/5934/61 LUCAS3.662/3656/38 PINAL5.042/5737/56 PASCO2.639/5837/58 After ages waiting for it, the blessed day has arrived: Texas has finally achieved swing-state status. It has a competitive Senate race, where Democrat MJ Hegar has an outside shot at unseating Republican Sen. John Cornyn, but the main event here is the presidential race, which polling indicates will be very close. Basically, Biden needs to replicate Beto O’Rourke’s 2018 map but perform just a smidge better, which requires dominant performances in Houston (Harris County), Dallas, Austin (Travis County), and El Paso, while squeaking out wins in Fort Worth (Tarrant County) and Austin’s suburbs (Williamson County), and coming close in Dallas’s outer suburbs in Collin County. Steve Singiser has also gone into more detail about the key counties in Texas.WISCONSIN ERIE2.049/4946/48 SHAWNEE6.457/4044/47 FORSYTH2.429/7024/71 CLAYTON2.388/1284/14 SUMTER2.063/3755/43 FLORENCE2.854/4546/51 LINN7.558/3950/41 CHESTER4.455/4452/43 BUCKS5.651/4948/48 FORSYTH3.856/4253/43 YUMA2.052/4746/47 OUTAGAMIE3.245/5541/53 LEWIS & CLARK7.056/4141/48 LeXINGTON5.837/6029/66 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results POTTAWATTAMIE2.744/5536/57 LAKE2.651/4936/57 RACINE3.249/5145/50 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results The perennial swing state of Iowa has both one of the nation’s closest presidential races and a key Senate race, though Democratic Senate candidate Theresa Greenfield seems to be running just ahead of Biden. As you can see from the table, most of the state’s small cities are modestly blue, with only Iowa City (in Johnson County) a Democratic stronghold. But Biden and Greenfield need to win basically all of them, except for the redder Council Bluffs and Sioux City (Pottawattamie and Woodbury Counties, respectively), in order to compensate for the much redder rural counties. Steve also has a deep dive into the key counties in Iowa if you’d like to explore further.KANSAS JOHNSON24.657/4044/47 CHEROKEE2.727/7122/72 LARIMER7.049/4848/43 MESA2.729/6928/64 YORK3.436/6333/62 MACOMB8.744/5642/54 STARK3.245/5439/56 BERKELEY3.847/5039/56 Kansas is here because of its competitive Senate race, although a good night will also see the Sunflower State pull into the single digits in its presidential race. Leading the way in Kansas’s slow move toward becoming a swing state is Johnson County, where most of Kansas City’s affluent suburbs are located. This was long the state’s stronghold of mainstream Republicanism, but Democrat Laura Kelly won the county 55-38 en route to her victory in 2018’s gubernatorial race.Democratic Senate hopeful Barbara Bollier will also need to dominate in Kansas City, Lawrence, and Topeka (Wyandotte, Douglas, and Shawnee Counties, respectively) and squeak out a narrow win in Wichita (Sedgwick County, the state’s second most populous county) because the entire rest of the state is very red.MICHIGAN GWINNETT8.055/4350/44 TARRANT7.550/4943/52 Pennsylvania has no Senate race this year, but as usual, it’s one of the linchpins (or you might even call it a keystone, if you will) of the presidential race. Biden needs to do what Clinton narrowly failed to do in 2016, which is to run up the score not just in the big cities but also in Philadelphia’s suburbs (Delaware, Montgomery, and to a lesser extent, Bucks and Chester Counties). That would compensate for the right turn that the counties outside of Pittsburgh in southwestern Pennsylvania, like Westmoreland, have taken. While Lackawanna County (where Biden’s hometown of Scranton is located) is too small to appear on the list, its next-door neighbor Luzerne County is also worth watching to see if Biden’s favorite-son status turns around this large Obama-to-Trump county.SOUTH CAROLINA OAKLAND13.953/4651/43 In Michigan, it’s worth watching both the presidential and Senate races, though polls suggest Biden and Democratic Sen. Gary Peters are on track to win by mid to high single-digits. Detroit (in Wayne County) is key, though the real impact here might not be its vote share rather turnout—and specifically, whether it can exceed 16.2% of the state’s total vote, its share in 2016. (In 2012, by contrast, Wayne was 17.2% of Michigan’s total en route to Barack Obama’s 9-point win, a figure similar to Biden’s current polling lead in the state.)You’ll also want to keep an eye on Macomb County in Detroit’s blue-collar suburbs, which is one of the nation’s largest counties to flip from Obama to Trump. Clinton did so poorly here that Biden doesn’t need to actually flip it back in order to win statewide, but this is one of those areas that seems tailor-made for a big Biden bounce back.MONTANA DALLAS2.449/4941/51 GENESEE4.154/4552/43 WARREN2.135/6429/66 BERKS3.046/5343/52 DEKALB7.784/1579/16 PUEBLO2.847/5146/46 SEDGWICK16.149/4736/54 COBB8.153/4548/46 MOHAVE3.128/7222/73 STATEWIDE—50/4935/56 JOHNSON4.973/2565/27 WELD4.935/6234/57 GALLATIN10.760/3745/44 DUBUQUE3.254/4546/47 STATEWIDE—50/4946/47 BUTLER2.337/6224/69 MISSOULA12.167/3052/37 SILVER BOW3.367/3252/39 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results SHEBOYGAN2.042/5638/54 RICHLAND8.072/2564/31 STATEWIDE—50/4947/48 The benchmarks are a solution to a problem you may have experienced: watching a race that’s expected to be close but, in the early going, suddenly finding that your preferred candidate is losing when you look at the total numbers. If you dig into county-level reporting, however, you might notice that mostly the smaller, rural counties are reporting first. To do that, you need to know the names of the larger counties you should actually watch, and that’s one thing that the benchmarks do.The other way the benchmarks help you is that when the larger counties start reporting, you can use them to see if the numbers that they’re reporting are coming in at the right level for your preferred candidate. That way, you can get a good early sense of how the race is going, before a majority of the votes have reported (which, again, is especially important in states where the rural areas tend to report first).- Advertisement – KENT6.447/5045/48 UNION2.235/6232/63 Wisconsin, of course, was scene of one of the biggest heartbreakers in the 2016 election and then saw a similarly close race in the 2018 gubernatorial election, though with much better results for Democrats. At least according to current polling, Biden looks to be winning the Badger State much more easily, but the bare minimum he needs to clear the hurdle here is to hit the 70s in Milwaukee and Madison (Dane County), keep it close to 50-50 in the state’s smaller blue-collar cities like Racine, Kenosha, and Oshkosh (Winnebago County), and just keep from getting totally embarrassed in conservative suburbs like Waukesha County (which, contrary to what you’ve heard, isn’t necessarily that crucial for winning).Make sure to join us at Daily Kos Elections on Nov. 3 starting at 6 PM ET for our complete coverage of election night! BUNCOMBE2.957/3954/40 North Carolina has not just a very competitive presidential race and a key Senate race, but also a contested gubernatorial race, though Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper is favored to win reelection. Biden and Democratic Senate candidate Cal Cunningham will need to hit the 60% mark in almost all of the state’s major cities in order to win statewide, considering how red much of the rural areas are (North Carolina does have a number of heavily Black rural counties in its northeast, though they’re all too small to register on this chart). One smaller city to keep an eye on is Wilmington (in New Hanover County), a longtime conservative stronghold where Cooper won in 2016 and that may be poised to flip at the presidential level.OHIO WASHINGTON2.631/6927/67 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results GASTON2.035/6332/64 STATEWIDE—49/4848/43 WILLIAMSON2.349/4842/51 STATEWIDE—50/4945/48 MARICOPA60.250/4945/48 LORAIN2.554/4648/48 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results BROWN4.345/5441/52 MONTGOMERY4.753/4647/48 South Carolina may end up with a single-digit presidential race, but the real story here is the Senate contest, where Democrat Jamie Harrison is neck and neck with Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham. South Carolina is unique among all the states we’re looking at in that even its most populous county (Greenville) is a red county. To compensate for that, Harrison will need a dominant win in Charleston and come close in its suburbs (Berkeley and Dorchester Counties).One other source of strength for Harrison that doesn’t show up on the list is that South Carolina has a large number of Black-majority rural counties that run in a belt across the state’s middle; individually, these counties aren’t very populous but taken together they make up much of the state’s 6th Congressional District. Orangeburg is one of the largest of these counties (it’s 1.9% of the state’s total), and Harrison would need to be in the mid-70s here to be on track to win statewide.There’s also a special caveat for the Palmetto State: Harrison and his allies have been spending heavily to boost Constitution Party candidate Bill Bledsoe as a way of peeling off conservative voters who feel Graham hasn’t been sufficiently loyal to Trump. (Bledsoe dropped out a month ago and endorsed Graham, but his name will still be on the ballot.) If this gambit is successful, Harrison’s win target may fall a few points shy of 50%.TEXAS One of the drawbacks of a simple method like this one is that swings don’t occur uniformly across an entire state. One recent election where we found this out the hard way was 2016, where Hillary Clinton, in many states, actually hit most of the large-county benchmarks that I calculated, but where she came up short in the many rural counties that are too small for inclusion on these lists and where she essentially died of a thousand small cuts.Another potential problem here is that in urban counties, a candidate can hit the correct benchmarks in terms of percentage of vote share but fall off the pace in terms of turnout, as happened in Milwaukee and Detroit in 2016. The opposite is also possible: In last year’s race for governor in Kentucky, Democrat Andy Beshear fell below his benchmarks but still won by running up huge raw vote totals in the cities. That’s why the benchmark for each county’s share of the state’s total votes is important data, though unfortunately it’s hard to tell whether you’ve hit the right mark on turnout until all the votes have been counted.The biggest potential difficulty of all, though, has been magnified by the pandemic and Donald Trump. We know that Democrats prefer mail and early voting while Republicans prefer to cast their ballots on Election Day. Each of these different bucks of votes, however, are generally reported at different times, with early votes and some mail votes typically appearing first, followed by Election Day votes, and then later-arriving mail votes.- Advertisement – STATEWIDE—49/4947/49 DOUGLAS4.275/2262/29 LANCASTER4.040/5737/56 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results MAHONING2.155/4449/46 LA CROSSE2.155/4351/41 HAMILTON7.459/4053/42 WYANDOTTE4.174/2561/32 HORRY6.338/6130/67 WESTMORELAND3.035/6533/64 The way this all works is that for each table, you’ll see three columns of numbers. The left one is the percentage of the state’s total votes that come from each particular county. (They include only the counties that represent 2% or more of a state’s total vote, so you can weed out the clutter, though collectively, these small counties can add up—more on that below.)The middle column is the target the Democratic candidate should be shooting for, usually in order to shoot for 49% to 50% statewide and the barest possible majority. Finally, the right-hand column is the 2016 result, so you understand the baseline for the current 2020 estimates.This all operates at the level of rough estimates, just for the benefit of advanced election-watchers. Actual professional campaigns use much more precise and granular information for setting targets, often at the precinct level and relying on voter file data.- Advertisement – CUYAHOGA11.071/2865/30 DENTON3.344/5437/57 GREENVILLE10.243/5335/59 NORTHAMPTON2.349/5146/50 CHARLESTON8.459/3751/43 STATEWIDE—49/4947/47 SPARTANBURG5.841/5733/63 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results MONTGOMERY2.329/7022/73 CASCADE6.950/5035/57 DENVER11.975/2474/19 CUMBERLAND2.041/5738/56 STATEWIDE—50/4945/50 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results STATEWIDE—49/4941/55 NEW HANOVER2.449/4846/49 MECKLENBURG10.065/3262/33 STATEWIDE—49/4946/50 YORK5.444/5236/58 LEE3.540/5838/58 POLK14.860/3852/40 COCONINO2.360/3554/35 ANDERSON3.834/6426/70 STORY3.259/3651/38 BEAUFORT3.749/4941/55 WINNEBAGO2.947/5243/50 DORCHESTER3.046/5038/56 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results DURHAM3.381/1778/18 PIMA16.258/4153/40 ALLEGHENY10.759/4056/39 STATEWIDE—50/4943/52 FT. BEND2.958/4251/45 DALLAS8.568/3261/35 FLATHEAD9.543/5728/64 BEXAR6.661/3854/41 YELLOWSTONE14.046/5131/58 COLLIN4.046/5339/56 TRAVIS5.273/2466/27 STATEWIDE—49/4943/51 STATEWIDE—50/4942/51 We could therefore see results that initially lean Democratic, then shift toward the GOP, then tilt back toward Democrats. But that’s just one potential arc. Because every state has different rules that govern its vote-counting procedures, and because partisan preferences for voting method are by no means set in stone, the flow of results could vary distinctly from state to state.One last caveat: Two states that you might be looking for, but unfortunately couldn’t be included, are Alaska and Maine, both of which have competitive Senate races. Alaska simply doesn’t have counties, so there are no county-level benchmarks to be set. (You might be able to find reporting by legislative district if you look at the state’s elections site, though.) Maine does have counties, but as with the rest of New England, election data in Maine is reported at the town level, so if you went looking for “Cumberland County” or “Penobscot County” real-time data, you’d be very disappointed. (Some of the state’s biggest cities include Portland, Bangor, Auburn, and Lewiston, if you want to look at town-level data.) WAKE11.160/3657/37 CUMBERLAND2.759/3956/40 EL PASO2.476/2369/26 HENRY2.455/4550/46 SUMMIT4.758/4152/43 DANE10.474/2570/23 YAVAPAI4.436/6331/62 MARATHON2.342/5838/56 STATEWIDE—49/4936/56 WAUKESHA8.037/6233/60 PALM BEACH7.058/4156/41 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results KENOSHA2.651/4947/47 COUNTY% OF 2016STATEWIDE VOTEWHAT Dems NEEDTO BREAK 50%2016 PRES.Results DELAWARE4.962/3859/37 Hey, did you know there’s a close race in Florida this year? I know, that’s so weird; it’s never happened before! Ordinarily, the path to victory for Democrats in Florida means running in the 60s in the three mega-counties of the Miami area (Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach) as well as That Other Orange County (the one that has Orlando in it). It also means holding serve in the St. Petersburg and Jacksonville areas (Pinellas and Duval Counties, respectively), while riding out the GOP onslaught in the state’s smaller counties.This year’s number mix might be a little different, though, based on district-level polling we’ve seen, which has seen Biden underperforming Clinton somewhat in the Cuban community in Miami but dramatically overperforming Clinton in the “I-4 Corridor” suburbs like Pinellas and Seminole Counties.GEORGIA LEAVENWORTH2.646/5133/58 HILLSBOROUGH6.354/4552/45 Let’s talk further about the methodology here. If you’re a regular consumer of our county benchmarks, you might know that in the past it’s usually been a very simple math process. For instance, in Arizona, Clinton’s 45/48 result in 2016 would be turned into a 50/43 target in 2020, accomplished by adding 5 to the 2016 Democratic vote share in each county and subtracting 5 from the GOP vote share in each county.However, 50/43 isn’t a very realistic target, because we have a more conventional election this year, with less-disliked candidates, and it’s highly unlikely that third-party candidates this year will take 7% of the total vote, as they did four years ago. The third-party vote might still end up at about 2%, though, so I’ll generally be modeling to either 50/49 or 49/49 this year.What I’ve therefore done this year is create an intermediate step (which I’m not showing in the table, to minimize onscreen clutter, but I’ll describe the process to make it more transparent), where, in Arizona, I would first add 3 to both sides of the 2016 result, so 45/48 becomes 48/51, and the two-party share gets bumped up to 99%, which is more typical in most elections.It’s possible, of course, that the split in 2016 wasn’t exactly half-and-half; in other words, the number of Democrats defecting to the Greens or Libertarians in 2016 might not have been equal to the number of Republicans defecting to Libertarians or Evan McMullin’s campaign. There’s no good way to figure that out with any certainty, though, so I’m simply splitting the difference equally.Only then do I switch over to the old method, where I would add 2 to the Democratic side and subtract 2 to the GOP side, to bring the target vote share to 50/49 that would get Joe Biden and/or Democratic Senate candidate Mark Kelly across the finish line by the barest margin possible.If you apply this method to Pima County (home of Tucson), you’d see that in 2016, the county went 53/40 for Clinton. After the intermediate step, that becomes 56/43 for Clinton. Adding 2 to the Democratic side and subtracting 2 from the Republican side, that gets turned into a 58/41 target for 2018. As you’ll note, no correction is needed in the state’s largest county, Maricopa County; that’s because more than half of the state’s population lives there, so naturally it’s going to have a very similar vote share percentage breakdown as the state as a whole.COLORADOlast_img read more

Hilarious heckler at 16-inning Giants-Mets game didn’t care who won, just wanted it to be over

first_imgWhen I was a kid, I had this rule: “Never leave in the middle of a baseball game.” I may have had my rule, but my dad had the car keys.So it was in 1969 that we left a perfectly good doubleheader in Anaheim because my dad wanted to get home to see man’s first steps on the moon. As if that would never happen again.And so it was we attended a Giants doubleheader the following year at Candlestick Park on a bitter, wind-blown day. The first game went 13 innings and four hours. Halfway through the …last_img read more

Overcoming the challenges of the 2015 growing season

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest It is mid-July, 2015 somewhere in rural northwest Ohio. In any low areas, placid lakes sit where productive farm fields once dwelled and ducks paddle about in the place of dusty farm equipment. Blackened, rotting wheat plants hang their heads low in despair. Corn fields grow in waves rolling over the tile lines and dipping in between. Soybeans are just poking up through the ground, if they are there at all. The hot sun bakes the muddy edges of the slowly shrinking lakes, giving off a smell of rotting seeds and the death of a well-planned crop baking into the crusted, soggy soil.It is hard to imagine, even for those who sat in their farm shops and watched the rains fall day, after day, after day. It is devastating and difficult to believe that these worn-torn July fields battling Mother Nature have any hope of producing a successful crop. Many, in fact, did not, but somehow many farms still managed to prevail. There is no question that the magnitude and duration of the flooding problems early in 2015 defined the growing season for some northwest Ohio fields and farms.For this part of the state, the rains started early, spanning from late winter to early summer with few breaks of spring sunshine. The Farm Service Agency numbers showed that Ohio had 26,423 prevented planting acres of corn and 91,032 acres of prevented planting soybeans in 2015. Defiance County led the state in prevented planting acres with 34,678. Other prevented planting leaders were Paulding County with nearly 14,000 prevented planting acres and Putnam County with over 9,000 acres. In many cases in these and surrounding counties, the rains were unrelenting from early April through early July.From April 1 until June 28, Van Wert received over 24 inches of rain — 13.45 inches more than normal, according to USDA. Defiance had 7.45 inches more than normal. Statewide, nearly all locations had received more than normal rainfall by June 28. The northeast also had several areas with well aboveSuzette Vastano with Apple Farm Service decided to check out how deep the water really was near Covingtonnormal rainfall for 2015, including Akron with 5.51 inches more than normal and Mosquito Creek with 8.42 inches above normal. In contrast to the soggy spring in some areas, many other parts of Ohio experienced near perfect planting conditions in between showers in late April and early May.June set rainfall records in many parts of Ohio, though some areas remained dry until around the middle of the month. Widespread heavy rains brought most fieldwork to a halt in Ohio in the week ending June 22, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture crop progress report. After already being well beyond waterlogged and just starting to recover from previous flooding, parts of northwest Ohio were hit by another six inches of rain during the week ending June 28.The narrow planting windows for some areas magnified the importance of early planting dates this year.“The record rainfall in some areas this spring was mind boggling,” said Peter Thomison, Ohio State University Extension corn specialist. “There was a tremendous difference with the planting dates for corn this year that were really profound — 50 or 60 bushels just on a few days in planting date differences. The earlier corn was able to develop its secondary root system that allowed it to better tolerate the stress and saturated soil conditions. The corn doesn’t thrive under those conditions, but it at least survives. The corn that was planted later really struggled and had a much more difficult time recovering after conditions were more favorable. We have seen years where later planted corn did better, but this year was certainly a strong argument for planting corn early.”In general, the wet weather seemed to be harder on the corn yields than the soybeans, though visually speaking corn looked better for most of the season.“It almost seemed that farmers were relatively surprised with their soybean yields and were happier with the soybeans than they were with their corn at the end of the year,” Thomison said. “Some people said it was the best looking, worst yielding corn they ever had. I think nitrogen was a major issue. We lost a lot of N from the fields this year.”A 2015 OSU study looking at nitrogen rates revealed some insights into the N loss and offered some clues into disappointing corn yields. The research included plots with 0 pounds of N applied, 110 pounds applied and 220 pounds applied in a corn-after-corn setting.“Within each N rate treatment we observed tremendous variability in yield. Yields of check plots with 0 N applied ranged from 26 to 92 bushels per acre whereas yields of plots with 110 pounds of N per acre applied ranged from 91 to 181 bushels per acre and plots with 220 N pounds of N per acre applied ranged from 114 to 192 bushels per acre. It was all the luck of the draw based on the location in the field,” Thomison said. “The wetter spots took a major hit on yields even where the corn visually looked alright. Visually, it was very striking in the 0 plots where the corn was yellow and stunted, but in the plots with 110 and 220 pounds of N, the corn basically looked pretty good but the yields were not there in some cases.”N issues were also likely responsible for corn that “evened up” from the tile line roller coaster fields early in the season.“When soil conditions finally dried out there was still some soil available N there that had not been lost to denitrification and leaching, probably in the form of ammonia, and the plants resumed what appeared to be normal growth. Once that wet period ended, the plants appeared to be normal, but it didn’t always translate into normal yields,” Thomison said. “We had a study where we had to keep visiting the field and every time we went out to the plots it was raining or about to rain. We actually discarded some of the plots that were uneven, but by the time they were tasseling, you might not have been able to distinguish them from the plots that looked more normal early in the season. They appeared normal but they just didn’t get the nutrient uptake and growing conditions they needed for the yield potential.”The wet conditions also led to early disease issues in the fields for both corn and soybeans. Gray leaf spot and northern corn leaf blight began showing up in early July. Hybrids that were particularly susceptible to these diseases really benefitted from fungicide applications this year on some farms.In soybeans, all of the rain during May, June, and July led to a number of disease issues, according to Anne Dorrance, Ohio State University plant pathologist. Disease problems in 2015 soybeans included Sclerotinia stem rot, sudden death syndrome and frogeye leaf spot. The presence and severity of those diseases in fields will be important to remember while choosing varieties for next year.“Those fields that have a long history of Sclerotinia stem rot, Phytophthora root and stem rot, soybean cyst nematode, brown stem rot, and sudden death syndrome — the inoculum may decline a bit, but it is always there in wait for the highly susceptible variety and the perfect environment to strike again,” Dorrance said. “Don’t plant the same variety in the same field again next year, especially if you had disease this year. For frogeye leaf spot, this pathogen (Cercospora sojina) does overwinter here in Ohio. If your levels of frogeye hit the 6% leaf area affected or higher in the top canopy, it is time to switch to a different variety, move the resistance to frogeye as the main selection factor for variety selection for 2016.”Diseases may have gotten an earlier start than normal due to the extremely wet conditions, but by mid-August it was not hard to find gaping cracks from dry weather in some of the same fields that were completely submerged just a few weeks earlier. The generally drier conditions curtailed diseases in many fields later in the season.“There were reports of anthracnose early in the season. We were very concerned about the potential for northern corn leaf blight and gray leaf spot but we were fortunate in that regard because conditions turned dry later in the season. The dry conditions also produced some exceptionally dry corn out of these fields,” Thomison said. “I suspect there might have been localized problems, but by in large ear rots, mycotoxins and stalk lodging were all no-shows this fall.”By harvest, some of those devastated fields in northwest Ohio and around the state were looking better, but still produced highly variable results.“Later planted corn took it on the chin again then when conditions turned dry later in the season, which is the classic worst-case scenario,” Thomison said. “We were lucky, though, that we never had extremely high temperatures. The relatively mild temperatures saved us from much worse yields.”There were, no doubt, poor yields around the state, but Ohio’s farmers and their crops once again showed unbelievable resiliency in the extremely challenging situations of 2015.“The hybrids today are much better able to handle this than they were in the past. Many older hybrids would have just thrown out blanks or nubbin ears under the conditions we saw this year. Most of today’s hybrids have much greater resiliency than they did 20 years ago,” Thomison said. “We are seeing more of these extreme weather events. The bottom line is that you have to use best management practices and yields like this after the challenges we saw this year are a reflection of how remarkable corn is and the level of management out there.”The corn and soybean growing season of 2015 produced some record high and some record low yields (sometimes in the same farms and fields) depending on when and where the rains fell. Despite the downright disastrous start to the season for so many Ohio farms, as of Nov. 1, USDA estimates put the state’s average corn yield at 163 bushels and soybeans at 50 bushels per acre.last_img read more

Twitter Ad Changes: Who’s Affected, Who’s Not

first_imgA Comprehensive Guide to a Content Audit Tags:#advertising#NYT#twitter#web sarah perez Related Posts The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videoscenter_img Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification In-stream Twitter ads are here to say, or so says Jan Schulz-Hofen, CEO of Magpie, a Twitter ad network that was among many seemingly under fire from Twitter, Inc. last week after the company announced changes to its terms of service. In this newly updated agreement between Twitter and its developers, it appeared that the popular microblogging company was banning the insertion of ads into users’ Twitter streams. Because of the vague language used, there was a lot of initial confusion about what types of third-party services would be affected by these changes. At first glance, it appeared Twitter was banning ad networks like Magpie, Ad.ly and 140 Proof, among others, from automating the insertion of ads into a user’s timeline. As it turns out, that may not be the case after all. (For now, that is). Ad Networks to Users: Everything’s Fine, We Promise!Since the news first was announced, the owners of several Twitter advertising firms have posted, tweeted and sent out press releases affirming that their businesses are safe and sound. Ad.ly, for example, reported it was “business as usual” within hours of the original news. MyLikes CEO Bindu Reddy also confirmed the same. Ted Murphy from IZEA’s Sponsored Tweets blogged that not only is the service still up-and-running, it won’t even have to switch over to a non-automated mode of tweeting ads, as was suspected earlier.Now Magpie is adding its voice to the growing chorus, announcing that it too, is entirely unaffected by the changes. According to a press release issued by the company just yesterday, Twitter ad networks like its are not at risk, but Twitter client applications are. According to Magpie, the source for this information is Twitter’s own director of platform, Ryan Sarver, who posted to a Twitter mailing list last week clarifying the news: “I want to make sure this part is clear – this policy change isn’t meant to say that we are going to start policing if the content of something a user tweets is an ad or not. The policy change affects 3rd party services that were putting ads in the middle of a timeline. So if Liz is paid by Reebok to tweet about how much she loves their new shoes, we are not going to be policing that any more than we were on Friday. This policy also *does not prohibit* services like Ad.ly that help facilitate those relationships or even help her post the ads to her timeline on her behalf.”Who’s at Risk?But as we reported earlier, the “nuanced” language used in the terms of service already has some investors and developers worried. With this small change, the microblogging network has potentially threatened the business models of a number of services being developed atop Twitter’s platform.Twitter ad networks may be OK, but other applications may be at risk. For example, TechCrunch reported that Twitter banner ad network Featured Users was the first victim of the change, having put itself up for auction immediately after the news broke. But its co-founder Dusty Reagan, unequivocally countered that statement, replying via comments that Featured Users is “not adversely affected by Twitter’s new TOS, AT ALL.” (The caps are his, not ours). Then who is affected? That’s the real question. From everything we’ve heard, no businesses built on top of Twitter have been shut down as of yet. (Let us know if you’ve heard otherwise). Twitter’s Promoted Tweets FAQ Confirms Changes, Details What Apps AffectedIn the meantime, Twitter developer advocate Taylor Singletary, pointed concerned mailing list developers to a new resource at Twitter.com for advertisers. The page describes the company’s upcoming Promoted Tweets service, which will deliver targeted advertising at the top of Twitter’s search results pages. Launch partners for this service include Best Buy, Bravo, Red Bull, Sony Pictures, Starbucks and Virgin America, all of which will soon begin using a self-serve dashboard to “promote” tweets from everyday Twitter users (or their own accounts) and have those placed at the top of a search results page where they’re clearly labeled as ads, much like the sponsored results on a Google Web search results page. The secret to the ToS change and its meaning can be found within the FAQ. In response to the question “What sort of advertising is not allowed?”, the answer reads:Advertisements that resemble or might be confused by users as a Tweet Paid Tweets injected into any timeline on a service that leverages the Twitter API (other than Promoted Tweets). This applies to any Twitter stream, whether user based, search based, or otherThe first bullet point warns those tweeting ads that those ads must be properly identified as such, which isn’t a new requirement. However, it’s that second bullet point that’s the most telling regarding what services will be affected – that is, any service that leverages the Twitter API to serve ads must use Promoted Tweets going forward (Update: Twitter has clarified this – “If a service is going to place paid tweets into a timeline, then Promoted Tweets need to be used. Other types of paid tweets are not allowed”). Twitter will split the ad revenue with the service’s developer 50/50, explains the FAQ. Developers are also welcome to place ads “around or on” applications or websites that display tweets. Those revenues will not be shared with Twitter. Update: From the way it was worded, it appeared that revenue would not need to be shared with Twitter in these cases. However, Twitter says there are some cases where rev share is necessary. Specifically, “in cases where Twitter content is the primary basis of the advertising sale, we require you to compensate us (recoupable against any fees payable to Twitter for data licensing).” The ToS again clarifies that individuals being paid to tweet will not be affected, but concludes with a dire warning to those from the ad networks proclaiming everything is OK:“As with any practice, however, we are following this activity and will prohibit practices that have harmful effects on our ecosystem.” In other words, this may change again.Twitter would not comment on the Terms of Service changes nor its implications. Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro…last_img read more