The Race to Mid-January

As I mentioned yesterday, the leaders as of last week were Kamala Harris (light green), Elizabeth Warren (violet) and Julian Castro (light cyan).

Daily Mention Counts for Potential Democratic POTUS Candidates from December 24, 2018 to January 15, 2019

Each benefit from a media-driven surge last week. Today we will pause to take a look at their audiences before the race gets into full swing.

Candidate Mind-Share

None of the candidates suffer substantial mind-share in the tweets that mention them. So their audiences are talking about them on their own terms, rather than comparing them to other potential candidates. Elizabeth warren has the largest share of mentions thus far.

Count of Candidate Mentions in Tweets Mentioning Elizabeth Warren as of January 15, 2019

Kamala Harris narrowly trails Warren.

Count of Candidate Mentions in Tweets Mentioning Kamala Harris as of January 15, 2019

And Julian Castro has just over 10% of Warren’s tweets, but maintains an equally clear hold over his audience mind-share.

Count of Candidate Mentions in Tweets Mentioning Julian Castro as of January 15, 2019

Candidate Audience Bias

Looking more closely at the bias, the volume differences stand out most clearly. This is especially true when contrasting the two front runners with Julian Castro. But a few other terse generalizations can be drawn as well.

Elizabeth Warren is mentioned repeatedly and draws audience from all major regions of our space.

Distribution of Warren Mentions as of January 15, 2019

Both the mainstream left and mainstream right clusters have dense constellations of multi-mention users. And the conversation on the right dips deep into the extremist region. By and large we can say that everyone is talking about Elizabeth Warren.

Kamala Harris is similar, but has a slightly lower volume overall. Additionally, it appears as though she has both less density in the right half and greater density on the left. The extremist audience appears equivalent, but there is substantially less credible-right attention being paid to her thus far.1

Distribution of Harris Mentions as of January 15, 2019

Julian Castro has a smaller audience overall. But, unlike the two front runners, his audience seems to be dominated by credible-left twitter users.

Distribution of Castro Mentions as of January 15, 2019

Arguably Castro is in a better position to expand his base with substantially less exposure to the downside resulting from the interference of right-wing trolls and operatives.2

The Field Expands

The race is in full swing as of this week.

Mention Counts on January 15, 2019

Tomorrow, we’ll finish our week long series by taking a similar look at this week’s new entrants.

  1. In the next few weeks we will add a center-of-gravity view so we can take a closer look at whether Warren really does have lower and farther right center of gravity, as a quick glance suggests.
  2. Harris may also be better positioned than Warren, given the lower relative density of her right-wing audience. But the graph makes this less clear.

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