Analyzing elections: God is in the details

One of the problems with national story lines about primary elections is that primary turnout is so low, it is difficult to generalize about trends that might or might hold true in the autumn.

This is further complicated by the fact that local issues that are entirely opaque to the national media, can determine election outcomes that are then interpreted as signifying national trends and issues. By way of example, the front page of this morning’s Norwich Bulletin has a story about turnout in Windham County, which was near 40 percent in some towns, while the statewide turnout hovered around 25 percent. The reason? Tea Party strength? Anger at health care reform? Nope. There were some hotly contested contests for Judge of Probate in Windham County.

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