Whatever Happened To Jeb Bush’s $100 Million

February 23, 2016 in Daily Bulletin

Jeb Bush has suspended his campaign to become President of the United States. When he entered the race one of the biggest things he had going for him was his ability to amass funds – burning over $130 million in his bid for the Presidency. Nicholas Confessore and Sarah Cohen took a look at where all of the funding went:

  • By far the biggest line item was advertising, which ate up $84 million of the budget.
  • The campaign also paid $10 million to consultants who did opposition research and helped get people to the voting booths in battleground states.
  • A campaign has to spend some money to raise more money. Jeb Bush and team spent $16,000 on valets to park the cars of donors who came to Bush’s events.
  • The campaign also spent $90,000 on a branding campaign for Jeb! – though as the writers point out, in the end the only brand that really seemed to stick to him was “low energy”.
  • A campaign lives and dies on the efforts of late night volunteers. Jeb spent almost $5,000 feeding them pizza. Domino’s seemed to be a favoured choice.

Read the entire breakdown here.

See a similar breakdown for Obama’s more successful run in 2012 here. And read Centives’ coverage of the 2016 election here.

Source: The New York Times

Iowa Businesses Are Cashing In On The Attention

February 1, 2016 in Daily Bulletin

Iowa Caucus

All eyes are on the Iowa caucuses today. Businesses have found ways to take advantage writes Jeremy Quittner:

  • Some places such as Pizza Ranch have become election year institutions with candidates always planning events.
  • They are usually divided between the Democrats and the Republicans. Pizza Ranch, for example, usually only hosts Republican candidates.
  • One diner launched a coffee bean caucus. Patrons were invited to drop a coffee bean into a jar to indicate which candidate they supported.
  • The jars have been a surprisingly good predictor of caucus results leading to a lot of media attention that boosts business.
  • Another business sells caucus theme merchandise known for being edgy – think of all the plays on the word ‘caucus’.
  • According to one company, the Iowa caucus leads to an additional $100,000 in revenue.

Read more over here.

Source: Slate

The Economics Of Gambling On The 2016 Election

December 20, 2015 in Daily Bulletin

Paul Krishnamurty wrote about the foreigners making money betting on the American 2016 Presidential election:

  • It’s illegal to bet on politics in the United States, but countries around the world have a more liberal approach to gambling.
  • In 2012 the UK based Betfair saw $200 million traded in the market for betting on the next President.
  • In America the focus is usually on the predictions on pundits who have a lot of name recognition, and often some sort of partisan bent.
  • Betters, on the other hand, have to rely on extensive research and analysis, and must be aggressively neutral.
  • As a result betting markets are usually more accurate than media personalities. In 2004 pollsters said that the race would be close, but betting markets showed a clear advantage for Bush.
  • In many ways betting on political markets is easier than betting on sporting matches. Luck is much less of a factor. Krishnamurty is able to turn a profit of 90% on political markets.
  • The Republican nomination – with all its twists and turns – has been a windfall for betters as they buy and short candidates with each swing of the poll.
  • According to Krishnamurty the key to the 2016 election isn’t just to look at American trends but broader global ones. There is an anti-established, pro-populist wave across elections in the west, and American elections will likely be no different.

Read more about who Krishnamurty is betting on, his reasoning, the amount of money he expects to make from this election, and more over here.

Source: Politico

If You Vote For Your Favourite Presidential Candidate You’re Voting For Their Death

December 15, 2015 in Daily Bulletin

If you like any of the candidates running for President as people you may want to hope that they don’t win:

  • A study has found that those who are elected head of state live an average of 2.7 years less than those who were runner ups to their land’s highest office.
  • By comparing against runner ups, the study helped control for things like the superior health care that a person running for the Presidency likely gets.
  • The study assessed the lifespans of 279 election winners across 17 countries.

Read more about the study here.

Centives did its own analysis and found that US Presidents age at about twice the rate of normal people. Read it here.

Source: The Economist

The Economics Of Make America Great Again Hats

December 1, 2015 in Daily Bulletin

Christine Mai-Duc looked into the workers that make Donald Trump’s campaign Make America Great Again hats:

  • The hats are made in America and provide employment to those most vulnerable to overseas low cost producers.
  • The company that makes them earned $270,000 from the campaign in the last quarter alone.
  • However, the Latinos employed to make the hats are the very people that Trump sometimes speaks out against.
  • At $25 a pop the now iconic hats have been a boost to Trump’s campaign financing.

Read more about the role that Trump’s golfing business played and other details here.

Source: Los Angeles Times

Via: MSN

Making A Billion Dollars Isn’t Cool. You Know What’s Cool? Spending A Billion Dollars

June 9, 2015 in Daily Bulletin

As the battle for 2016 heats up, Stephanie Stamm looked at how Obama managed to burn through a billion dollars in running for President:

  • In 2012 Obama spent over $700 million on advertizing alone.
  • A few media industry giants got a lion’s share of the revenues from the campaign. Obama’s top advertizing firm got close to $400 million.
  • Consultants also raked in the cash. A direct marketing consultant group made $30 million from the campaign.
  • And then there are administrative services. American Express provided $2.3 million worth of services.
  • The life of a candidate and their team is hectic. United Airlines was team Obama’s carrier of choice and made $1.1 million even though the President has access to his own jet.
  • And there are, of course, the late night strategy and debate prep sessions. Domino’s catered for these, getting close to $10,000 in the process.
  • The campaign staff was, however, dangerously uncaffeinated, spending only $500 at Starbucks.
  • Kitty Purry – Katy Perry’s production company – was paid $128,000 though it’s unclear why.
  • This analysis doesn’t even count the amount spent by “Super PACs”. In 2012 they spent $580 million. In 2016 that’s projected to increase to $1.8 billion.
  • With the incredible number of Presidential candidates this election cycle, 2016 is likely to break all fund raising records.

See some really well done charts, and read more details here.

Source: National Journal

Why Losing Re-Election May Be A Blessing In Disguise

February 27, 2015 in Daily Bulletin

The comedic geniuses over at Cracked explained why winning a second Presidential term in America isn’t all that great:

  • Being President is so physically demanding that those who lose re-election live longer. Most of the longest living Presidents in history led one-term administrations.
  • The second term President’s party does badly which means a difficult Presidential term. For reasons that are unclear Americans vote against the President’s party in mid-terms during their second year, making it harder to get legislation passed.
  • It hurts the chances of the President’s favoured successor. After a two term President leaves the White Office somebody from another party is usually voted in.
  • The scandals begin to pile up and leak out. Watergate, Iran-Contra and Monica Lewinsky were all scandals that began to emerge during the second terms of administrations.

Read the full list of reasons, and the humour that makes articles from Cracked so entertaining over here.

Source: Cracked

The Economics Of The American Election: Pakistan Edition

November 11, 2012 in Daily Bulletin

The 2012 American Presidential election was keenly watched by people across the world. Dawn looked at how Barack Obama’s victory is likely to transform the economics of one industry in Pakistan: American flag making.

  • Obama is a fairly unpopular figure in Pakistan due to his use of drone strikes in Pakistani territory.
  • With his reelection, Pakistani flag-makers are expecting to see a surge in demand – for American flags – as disaffected citizens buy them to publicly set them on fire in protest of the strikes.
  • This isn’t the first time this year the flag makers have seen a boom in demand. Something similar happened when an anti-Islam film made in the United States surfaced on YouTube.

Find out how much an American flag costs in Pakistan, and the varying quality of the flags you can purchase over here.

Source: Dawn

Via: Marginal Revolution

What Happens To Romney’s Campaign Jet?

November 7, 2012 in Daily Bulletin

Let’s face it: the biggest reason to run for President is that you get to travel around in a private jet while you campaign. (It’s mostly a tease for the sweet ride you get if you actually win.) But what happens with the private jet after the candidate no longer needs it? Nick Summers reported:

  • The plane will have to be cleaned out. During the campaign it’ll have carried hundreds of people thousands of miles without much of a break. Things will be messy in there.
  • Governor Romney had fairly simple requirements and didn’t change things around on his jet much – but for the candidates that do, the plane must be reconfigured to its original layout.
  • The custom campaign paint job on the body of the jet will also have to be removed.
  • Luckily the owners of the plane have the experience to do the job well. The plane that flew Romney across the country has also flown musical group U2 and the hockey team, Boston Bruins.

Read more about how Romney acted as a passenger, and the other aircraft that he used over here.

Source: Business Insider

Election Myths

November 6, 2012 in Daily Bulletin

In the United States it is Election Day today. Robert Evans, Kristi Harrison, Jim Avery, and Jared Whitley dispelled some of the most popular myths about American elections. Highlights include:

  • It matters who you vote for. Studies suggest that candidates keep 75% of the promises they make. Your vote is your voice about which promises you would like to see fulfilled.
  • It’s not all about the swing voters. In fact, swing voters aren’t really who the candidates are targeting. Instead, it’s about the candidates convincing their own base to come out on Election Day to give their vote.
  • Money does not rule the election. While the amount of money spent in this election is eye-opening, this money is going towards advertizements that help to create a better informed electorate. The auto industry will spend far more this year, trying to court your dollars in exchange for one of their cars. We should hope that candidates spend a comparable amount courting your vote.
  • It’s not all about the gaffes. This election will not be determined by the person who made the biggest slipup – studies suggest that they don’t matter. Informed people, voting for meaningful reasons will decide the individual who will become the next President of the United States.

So if you’re eligible, go vote! And then read the rest of the article which covers several other election myths with Cracked’s signature mix of excellent writing, well researched information, and touches of humour over here.

Source: Cracked