Do book sales indicate who will win in November?

By Kevin DeAnna

Are the books on political subjects that Americans are buying an indication of the party they favor?  If so, look for a bleak November for Democrats.’s “Election Heat Map 2012” shows Americans are buying many more “red” books, with a Republican perspective, than “blue” books, with a Democratic perspective, from the Internet retail giant.

Aaron Klein’s and Brenda Elliot’s new New York Times bestselling book, “Fool Me Twice: Obama’s Shocking Plans for the Next Four Years Exposed,”  is near the top of  Amazon’s “red” book sales lists. The hardcover and Kindle editions of  have moved into the No. 2 and No. 3 positions, respectively.

“Fool Me Twice” is beating other heavily promoted conservative books, including Dinesh D’Souza’s “Obama’s America,” Steve Forbes’ “Freedom Manifesto” and Paul Kengor’s “The Communist.”

The book is continuing to climb up the Amazon rankings, reaching a high of No. 9 of all books sold and the No. 1 and No. 2 slots in the “Economic Policy” and “Communism & Socialism” categories.

The book is outselling its counterpart on liberal economic policy, Michael Grunwald’s “The New New Deal,” a widely promoted defense of the Obama stimulus plan. Klein’s and Elliott’s book, in contrast, describes in detail how Obama plans to expand federal spending and dwarf the stimulus spending of his first term if he is re-elected.

Amazon acknowledges books are not votes, and “a map of book purchases can reflect curiosity as much as commitment, but we hope our 2012 Election Heat Map will provide one way to follow the changing political conversations across the country during this election season.”

The report says the company takes the top-selling political books and categorizes them as “red,” “blue” or neutral.

“We classify books as red or blue if they have a political leaning made evident in book promotion material and/or customer classification, such as tags. We compute percentages, updated daily, for each state and the U.S. by comparing the 250 best-selling blue books during the time period against the 250 best-selling red books during the same time period, including new book launches. If the same book title has multiple formats (paperback, Kindle books and Audible Audio), each format has a separate sales calculation. The list only includes paid, not free Kindle books. All orders during the period are given equal weighting in the calculation. States with higher percentages of red or blue purchases are colored more darkly, and states with an even 50-50 split are colored neutral.”

Amazon notes that in recent years, news media have used color-coded maps for elections, with red representing Republican states and blue representing states favoring the Democratic Party.

Previously, the color code was the opposite.

According to the “Amazon Election Heat Map 2012,” conservative political books are outselling liberal titles in all but five states and the District of Columbia. A majority of 56 percent of Americans nationwide favor conservative books, reaching a high of 72 percent in Mississippi.

“Fool Me Twice” is averaging four out five stars in Amazon reviews, despite a concerted effort by liberals to give it a low rating. Klein and Elliott are also continuing their media tour, with Klein to appear on CNN on Friday.


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