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Monday, November 02, 2020

I polled my class about the election

 In 2016 I had the Sophomore discrete math class do a poll of who they wanted for president.

In 2020 I had the  both my  Senior Crypto class and Clyde's Sophomore algorithms course do a poll of who they wanted for president.

All of these polls were anonymous. One big difference- in 2016 it was paper, they could check offwho they wanted or put in a write in, whereas in 2020 it was on elms without a mechanism for a write in--- so no votes for Bernie or Bill or Kruskal (not sure if they were voting for the man or the algorithm) were possible. In all cases I included everyone who was on the Maryland Ballot (so Libertarian and Green votes were possible). 


Discrete Math 2016: 428 students took the poll. Write ins allowed. 

Clinton- 305 which is 71%

Trump- 44 which is  10%

Johnson (Libertarian)- 21 which is 5%

Stein (Green)-  11which is 3%

Sanders-6 which is 1%

Silly answers: 41 which is 10%

I was NOT surprised that Trump got 44 votes- every year I do this and every year the 

republican gets between 10 and 20 percent. Romney go 17% in 2012 (see here). 


Algorithms, 2020, 161 students took the poll

Biden: 127 (79%)

Trump: 25 (16%)

Hawkins (Green): 4 (2%)

Jorgenson (Libertarian): 4 (2%)

Segal (Bread and Roses Party) 1 (1%)


Cryptography in 2020: 

Biden- 40 which is 78%

Trump-6 which is 12%

Hawkins (Green ) 3 which is 6%

Jorgenson (Libertarian) 2 which is 4%

Segal (Bread and Roses) 0 which is 0%


I have no idea what these numbers mean. College students tend to be liberal- we knew that. That Trump went from 10% to 16% would be interesting if it was a larger sample size. I wonder if forcing them to NOT have a write-in had an effect. 


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