How We Are Covering Tonight’s DPI Primary in Wisconsin

By now, you are used to our county-by-county charts that scramble things up and resize counties based on their share of the votes. In a typical Wisconsin general election, such a chart would have Milwaukee, Dane, and Waukesha Counties bloated beyond recognition, with Washington, Ozaukee, Washington, Racine, Kenosha, Rock, Portage, La Crosse, Eau Claire, Marathon, Winnebago, Sheboygan, Outagamie and Brown joining them to make up about 75% of the display.

But Spring Elections are an entirely different beast, and with an incumbent (Evers) assured a spot for the general election, the real question tonight is who captures the anti-Evers vote, the conservative vote in the state: John Humphries or Dr. Lowell Holtz? What we are tracking tonight, besides the statewide tallies for all four candidates (a fourth write-in candidate, more liberal than Tony Evers, will get a scattering of votes), is who gets to claim the #2 position and thus go on to challenge the incumbent Superintendent.

With this in mind, we went back through several Spring cycles and isolated the votes received by conservative incumbents/challengers, and resized the Wisconsin counties to reflect their share of the anticipated conservative vote tonight:

wisconsin2017springelectionAs results come into our database, we are pulling back the curtain to show how we analyze and call races. Skipping all the interactive maps, you’ll get a look behind the Desk, with this design guiding us along as the numbers roll in. Not one to break every tradition, we’ll still have our traditional statewide tallies and precincts reporting. But we hope you enjoy this experimental broadcast as we cover one of our favorite states. Coverage will begin at 8:45pm ET with votes after polls close at 9pm.