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Premature Optimization is a Prerequisite for Success

Russian Elections: Patterns of Fraud

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Good news: some Russian bloggers have finally noticed Stephen Coleman’s social conformity theory (and they noticed my blog too), so there is hope that people will finally stop claiming that the correlation between turnout and party support indicates fraud. If you can read Russian, I recommend this analysis as well as other election-related posts in that blog: http://jemmybutton.livejournal.com/2550.html 

What I found the most interesting there, is the presentation of the data from http://ruelect.com (comparison of the copies of tally sheets obtained by observers versus the officially announced results). I haven’t looked at that data carefully before, and it looks interesting. So I decided to build a few quick plots. Ruelect.com has so far collected only about 1000 voting protocols. That is about 1% of total, and obviously, it is not a random sample, but it gives a lot of insight into how the falsification of voting results shaped the data.

Distribution of votes for United Russia. About 600 out of 1000 of voting protocols were altered in favor of the ruling party. Left: original observers’ copies. Right: the 600 altered protocols:



And the final distribution (left) compared to the distribution among all large-size precincts (virtually all available observer’s copies of tallies are from large precincts; here I describe how and why I break them by size):



Obviously, the ruelect data is not a representative sample.

And here is how the votes for the Communist Party were altered (in about 300 protocols out of 1000):



The vote-turnout plots reveal interesting patterns. Blue points – observer’s copies, red – official numbers, purple – they coincide (i.e. the data was not altered). The arrows connect the blue to the corresponding red (I borrowed this visualization technique from http://jemmybutton.livejournal.com/).



And last, but not least, the entropy plot.



Written by bbzippo

02/15/2012 at 5:53 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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