Nate investigates why the president had such an overwhelming tech advantage.
Even without the Bay Area’s vote, Democrats would still be favored to win California by solid margins. So why does any of this matter?
The reason is that Democrats’ strength in the region is hard to separate out from the growth of its core industry — information technology – and the advantage that having access to the most talented individuals working in the field could provide to Democratic campaigns.
Companies like Google and Apple do not have their own precincts on Election Day. However, it is possible to make some inferences about just how overwhelmingly Democratic employees at these companies are based on fund-raising data. (The Federal Election Commission requires that donors to presidential campaigns disclose their employer when they make a campaign contribution.)
Among employees who work for Google, Mr. Obama raised about $720,000 in itemized contributions this year, against only $25,000 for Mr. Romney. That means that Mr. Obama took almost 97 percent of the money between the two major candidates.
Apple employees gave 91 percent of their dollars to Mr. Obama. At eBay, Mr. Obama took 89 percent of the money from employees.
Over all, among the 10 American-based information technology companies on the Fortune’s list of “most admired companies,” Mr. Obama raised 83 percent of the funds between the two major party candidates.
Mr. Obama’s popularity among the staff at these companies holds even for those which are not headquartered in California. About 81 percent of contributions at Microsoft, which is headquartered in Redmond, Wash., went to Mr. Obama. So did 77 percent of those at I.B.M., which is based in Armonk, N.Y.
It does not require an algorithm to deduce that the sort of employees who might be willing to donate substantial money to a political campaign might also be those who would consider working for it.The New York Times | FiveThirtyEight