The Slatest

Do Democrats and Republicans Brag Differently During Their Convention Roll Calls?

Delegation state signage on the floor of the GOP convention on July 19 in Cleveland.

Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

The Democratic and Republican national conventions may be about the future of the country as a whole, but for a long stretch every four years, they’re also a platform for some good, old-fashioned, downright parochial chest-beating. During Tuesday’s roll calls, delegations took their turns to throw their support to the presidential candidates. But most of them also used their few seconds as a chance to boast, in some way, about the greatness of their state, territory, or district.

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Last week, Slate brought you our definitive ranking of roll-call brags by GOP delegates to the RNC in Cleveland. (Connecticut, proud home of Pez and WWE, won.) While observing the Democrats’ own colorful brags (New Mexico boldly identified itself as the setting of Breaking Bad, the AMC drama starring Bryan Cranston as a washed-up high school chemistry teacher turned meth dealer), we wondered: What attributes do state delegations find most brag-worthy?

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Below is our official tally of the most frequently mentioned traits state delegations boasted about at both conventions, ranked from most-bragged to least-bragged and color-coded to show partisan affiliation. Our methodology was pretty simple: It chiefly involved counting, and states that doubled down on a brag—say, mentioning multiple Democratic legislators or crowing over several champion sports teams—still only earned themselves one point in our ranking. (We also just stuck to states. Sorry territories and the District of Columbia!)

You can read a lot into the results about America’s perceived strengths, priorities, and goals. Republicans touted conservative values, pride in law-enforcement officials, and lower taxes. Democrats, meanwhile, praised their states’ diversity, history of civil rights, and Native American tribes. Republicans brought up jobs and businesses twice as much as Democrats did while Democrats showed more love for military vets and women. Democrats also boasted of being Democrats slightly more than Republicans feted their own partisan credentials, with 21 different delegations in Philadelphia bragging about the blueness of their state houses, governors’ mansions, or members of Congress compared with 20 of their Cleveland counterparts. Republicans seemed to express more vocal pride in their eventual nominee, with positive mentions of Donald Trump narrowly edging out shoutouts to Hillary Clinton, possibly reflecting lingering divisions within the Democratic party after a bitter primary. Barack Obama, by contrast, tied Trump with seven name-checks each.

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Alabama           RNC: Sports, Trump                               DNC: Sports, Civil rights Alaska               RNC: Terrain, Energy, Fishing/Hunting/Farming          DNC: Weather, Native Americans Arizona             RNC: Weather, Jobs                                DNC: Terrain, Jobs, Native Americans, Women Arkansas           RNC: Music, Jobs, Industry/Business, Republicans, Fishing/Hunting/Farming        DNC: Civil Rights, Hillary Clinton California          RNC: Trump                                   DNC: Energy, Anti-Trump Colorado           RNC: Sports, Terrain          DNC: Terrain Connecticut      RNC: Foodstuffs, Industry/Business, Sports                          DNC: Foodstuffs, Constitution, Democrats, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama Delaware          RNC: Republicans, Veterans, Constitution DNC: Veterans, Terrain, Industry/Business, Sports, Music, Constitution, No/Low Taxes Florida              RNC: Sports, Terrain, Veterans, Weather, No/Low Taxes       DNC: Weather, Democrats, Obama, Hillary Clinton Georgia            RNC: Business/Industry                                DNC: Civil rights, History, Diversity, Democrats Hawaii              RNC: Aloha                                             DNC: Barack Obama, Energy Idaho                RNC: Republicans, Industry/Business            DNC: Terrain Illinois               RNC: Governor                                   DNC: Barack Obama, Democrats Indiana             RNC: Republicans, Jobs, Industry/Business            DNC: Democrats, Barack Obama, Anti-Trump Iowa                 RNC: Republicans                                  DNC: Women Kansas              RNC: Sports, Republicans                       DNC: Barack Obama, Democrats, Civil rights Kentucky           RNC: Sports, Music, Business/Industry, Drinkstuffs, Values, Constitution, Veterans, Law Enforcement DNC: Terrain, Sports, Drinkstuffs Louisiana          RNC: Sports DNC: Diversity, Hunting/Fishing/Farming Maine               RNC: Terrain, Values, Republicans, Loser Democrats, Jobs, No/Low Taxes                       DNC: Values, Fishing/Hunting/Farming, Democrats, Anti-Trump Maryland          RNC: Terrain, History, Veterans, Sports        DNC: Veterans, Terrain, Democrats, Women, Civil Rights Massachusetts RNC: Trump          DNC: History, Values, Civil rights Michigan          RNC: Republicans, History             DNC: Industry/Business, Jobs Minnesota        RNC: Terrain, Foodstuffs, Music, Republicans           DNC: Music, Tim Kaine, Democrats, History, Civil Rights, Women Mississippi       RNC: Music                                            DNC: Music, Diversity, Civil rights Missouri           RNC: Sports, Republicans       DNC: History, Tim Kaine, Sports Montana           RNC: Terrain, Values                               DNC: Terrain, Fishing/Hunting/Farming, Native Americans, Women Nebraska          RNC: Foodstuffs, Values DNC: Democrats, Diversity Nevada             RNC: Law Enforcement, Republicans, History, Terrain                                 DNC: Terrain, Diversity New Hampshire                                                      RNC: Trump, No/Low Taxes       DNC: Democrats, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders New Jersey       RNC: Trump                     DNC: Democrats, Diversity, History New Mexico     RNC: Diversity, Terrain                          DNC: Native Americans, Industry/Business, Veterans, Democrats, Diversity New York          RNC: Trump                                           DNC: Women, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Jobs North Carolina  RNC: Veterans, Terrain/Nature, Industry/Business, Jobs, Republicans        DNC: Sports, Veterans North Dakota    RNC: Sports                                            DNC: Native Americans Ohio                  RNC: Republicans                                                DNC: Sports, Democrats, Civil rights Oklahoma         RNC: Republicans, Energy, Hunting/Fishing/Farming      DNC: Native Americans Oregon             RNC: Terrain, Foodstuffs, Drinkstuffs, Sports, Loser Democrats, Industry/Business      DNC: Terrain, Sports, Native Americans Pennsylvania     RNC: Sports, Republicans                       DNC: Democrats Rhode Island    RNC: Values, History, Terrain, Loser Democrats, Trump                                     DNC: Terrain, Democrats, Industry/Business, Women, Foodstuffs South Carolina  RNC: Terrain/Nature, Foodstuffs, Sports, Industry/Business     DNC: Civil Rights, History, Democrats, Sports South Dakota    RNC: Monuments                                            DNC: Monumnets, History, Democrats, Women Tennessee        RNC: Values, Jobs, Business/Industry, Republicans, No/Low Taxes    DNC: Women Texas                RNC: Jobs, Industry/Business, Republicans, Loser Democrats, Law Enforcement               DNC: Democrats, Women, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton Utah                 RNC: Values, Jobs, Business/Industry, Republicans DNC: Terrain/Nature, Weather Vermont           RNC: Values, History                                           DNC: Bernie Sanders, History, Democrats, Anti-Trump Virginia             RNC: Values, History                                            DNC: History, Veterans, Tim Kaine Washington      RNC: Terrain/Nature, Fishing/hunting/farming, Industry/Business, History    DNC: Democrats, Native Americans, Terrain/Nature West Virginia   RNC: Sports                                            DNC: Values Wisconsin         RNC: Republicans, Sports, Industry/Business DNC: Jobs, Foodstuffs, Industry/Business, Drinkstuffs, Sports Wyoming          RNC: Republicans, Terrain/Nature, Energy, Industry/Business, Values, No/Low Taxes DNC: Terrain/nature, Monuments, Women

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