Does your vote really matter?
The New York Times in 2005 reported the median margin of victory in Congressional elections is 22 percent. That's what economists Casey Mulligan and Charles Hunter found when they analyzed more than 56,000 Congressional elections dating to 1898.
The economists also took a look at more than 40,000 state legislature races, comprising nearly a billion votes, NYT reported. There, they found only nine elections tied or decided by a single vote.
But close to home, our research shows a single vote can be huge. Just ask Tucumcari City Councilman Jimmy Sandoval.
Sandoval won his second term representing Tucumcari last week, receiving 36 votes to his opponent's 35. Challenger Amy J. Gutierrez said she had a family emergency on election day and was unable to vote as planned — her one vote the difference in the race.
And it wasn't Sandoval's first experience with a close call. In 2004, his municipal race ended in a tie with Christopher Maestas. Both received 67 votes that time and agreed to settle the election in a card game. Maestas drew the high card.
So we encourage participation in the election process.
Guns up …
Major League Baseball has backed down. The Houston Astros can stick to their guns, MLB.com reported last week.
Earlier this year, baseball executives told the Astros they'd have to remove the image of a smoking pistol if they wanted to wear their retro Colt .45 jerseys to celebrate their big-league beginnings of 50 years ago.
But fans complained and executives relented.
"The Astros said they heard from thousands of fans who were 'passionate and virtually unanimous' in their support of the authentic Colt .45s jersey," MLB.com reported.
The Astros are scheduled to wear the original Colt .45s jerseys on April 10 against the Braves and on April 20 against the Dodgers.
The franchise was known as the Colt .45s from 1962 through 1964.
It's nice to see Major League Baseball side with its fans this time. We suspect the gun-control fanatics don't buy near as many tickets to games.