I found the results of this candidate compatibility calculator interesting. The calculator consists of 23 issues that you rate your support as Yes/No/unsure and the importance of the issue as High/Medium/Low. I visited to find out what candidate my views supposedly corresponded with. I have been surprised by some calculators before. Aside from the top candidate I thought that the calculator did pretty well with me (My Candidate Matchup). I may agree generally with John Cox on the issues, but I don’t know that he is much more prepared than I am to be President (except that he’s over 35). I was disappointed to see that until I expanded the list of top candidates and found that Mike Huckabee has the same percentage of compatibility with my views followed by Ron Paul. Mitt Romney, John McCain and (surprisingly) Tom Tancredo were tied below that followed by Fred Thompson. I knew that the calculator was right to put Rudy Giuliani at the bottom among the Republicans on my list (below a Democrat no less).
When I saw the results I was surprised to see the aggregate results which show that 55% of respondents lined up with Republicans when the prevailing wisdom is that Democrats have the edge in the 2008 election. Complicating this surprise is the fact that the number one individual candidate with the for respondents overall was Mike Gravel – a Democrat. Perhaps one of the reasons for this interesting combination of results is that the scoring does not penalize candidates who oppose your position on issues of high importance to you – they are scored the same as candidates who take no position on the issues of high importance to you. Perhaps the high success for Mike Gravel is that he is undeclared on most issues where there is not much consensus on the issue. This would allow him to get points with every respondent who did not list the issue as being of high importance.
UPDATE: I used the calculator again and took a stance on some of the issues I had marked as unsure before. This time Ron Paul topped my list. More interestingly Rudy Giuliani was now significantly below two Democrats and tied with a third. (Is it any wonder that I won’t vote for him?)