The Washington Post

What your last name says about your politics

A few months back, the folks at GovBeat showcased a fascinating tool that allowed you to simply type in your first name and find out what it said about your political leanings -- and the political leanings of all the people who shared your first name. Now, you can find out what your last name says about your politics too.

The tool is below -- thanks to the good people, at Targetsmart, a "data firm specializing in providing high-quality data and data integration technology to organizations that communicate directly with large numbers of people," according to its website. (Here's the explanation of how the search works: "TargetSmart used the Clarity Campaign Labs model which predicts an individual's projected turnout from 0 to 100%. There are several factors that go into creating this model. The predicted turnout for the last name was calculated by finding an average of everyone in their file with the chosen last name. For the map, it is an average of everyone with the same last name within each state.")

We did a bit of fiddling with the search for some of the better known political names out there.

The last name "Obama" is too unique to render any details on its political leanings. (For the sake of privacy, TargetSmart's search doesn't return results for last names with under 100 matches. Like "Obama". And "Cillizza".)

If your last name is "Clinton", which is the 2,064th most common last name in the United States, there's a 63 percent chance you are a Democrat. "Bush" is the 364th most common last name in America with a 55 percent probability of a person with that last name being a Democrat(!).  "Biden"'s have a 55 percent probability of being Republicans. "Cruz"'s have an 82 percent probability of being Democrats.

Have fun with it. And say goodbye to your afternoon.

Chris Cillizza writes “The Fix,” a politics blog for the Washington Post. He also covers the White House.



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