The Hong Kong Election Results

The final voter turnout was 1,784,140 out of 3,207,227 at a rate of 55.6%.  This was better than the two previous Legco elections in 2000 and 1998, but it is less than the 60% forecast (and never mind the 70% wished for by the Democratic Party).  The results of the directly elected geographical constituencies are shown in the table (with the winners in bold letters), and you can find the results of the functional constituences in this other post.

Geographical District/candidate %HKU 9/11 poll # of actual votes % of actual votes
Hong Kong (5 seats)
1. Ma Lik/Choy So-yuk (DAB)
2. Rita Fan (independent)
3. Tsang Kin-shing
4. Yeung Sum/Martin Lee (DP)
5. Kevin Wong
6. Audrey Eu (Article 45 Concern)

15.5 %
23.6 %
  1.3 %
27.4 %
  0.7 %
31.6 %

21.1 %
18.5 %
  1.5 %
37.2 %
  0.8 %
20.9 %
Kowloon East (5 seats)
1. Fred Li (DP)
2. Chan Kam-lam (DAB)
3. Albert Cheng (independent)
4. Alan Leong (independent)
5. Chan Yuen-han (HK FTU)

16.9 %
13.3 %
21.5 %
23.1 %
25.2 %


19.2 %
18.8 %
25.0 %
19.1 %
17.9 %
Kowloon West (4 seats)
1. Lau Yu-shing
2. Frederick Fung (ADPL)
3. Lau Chin-shek
4. Tsang Yok-sing (DAB)
5. James To (DP)
6. Bruce Liu (ADPL)
  0.4 %
23.3 %
23.7 %
19.5 %
28.0 %
  5.1 %

  0.8 %
20.5 %
20.4 %
27.1 %
26.6 %
  5.9 %
New Territories East (7 seats)
1. Leung Kwok-hung (April 5 Action)
2. Tso Wung-wai (HK Progressive Alliance)
3. Andrew Cheng, Emily Lau, Ronny Tong (DP)
4. James Tien (Liberal)
5. Andrew Wong
6. Lau Kong-wah/Li Kwok-ying (DAB)
  7.9 %
  3.5 %
43.6 %
20.2 %
  7.5 %
17.3 %

14.1 %
  3.3 %
39.2 %
15.9 %
  5.4 %
22.1 %
New Territories West (8 seats)
1. Albert Chan
2. Lee Wing-tat (DP)
3. Albert Ho (DP)
4. Leung Yiu-chung (Neighborhood & Workers)
5. Chow Ping-tim
6. Stephen Char
7. Tam Yiu-chung/Cheung Hok-ming (DAB)
8. Ng Tak-leung
9. Selina Chow (Liberal)
10. Lui Sau-tuen (New Century Forum)
11. Lee Cheuk-yan (HK CTU)
12. Yim Tin-sing (ADPL)
  5.4 %
15.2 %
12.2 %
12.6 %
  0.2 %
  2.9 %
18.7 %
  0.8 %
14.6 %
  1.0 %
12.7 %
  3.6 %


  7.8 %
13.5 %
13.5 %
12.7 %
  2.0 %
24.9 %
  0.4 %
10.9 %
  1.0 %
  9.9 %
  3.1 %

I have included the HKU final public opinion poll numbers to illustrate a longstanding complaint from the DAB.  I have extracted these numbers:

This occurs systematically across the board and it has always happened.  This is a systematic bias as opposed to any margin of sampling error.  Why is that?  I cannot believe for one second that the HKU team is manipulating the numbers.  I believe the bias is built into the survey methodology and execution.  The HKU public opinion poll is conducted via the telephone.  For whatever reasons, the DAB voters either do not have telephones, or they will not answer telephones, or they will not speak to pollsters, or they will not reveal their actual intentions.

This leaves the Hong Kong Public Opinion Programme with an ethical dilemma.  Do they keep publishing a set of numbers that is known to be systematically biased?  The standard practice is to publish a description of methodology with a list of limitations and let the readers decide for themselves.  But does anyone read that stuff?  Even after reading it, does a non-technician really understand what is going on?  Would they serve people better by telling them to take the DAB number and multiplying it by 1.25?

Now you are going to want an analysis of who won and who lost.  My analysis based upon the exit poll results is given at the bottom of this post, and it still applies to the official counts.  Meanwhile, here are the headlines in the foreign media:

Can you believe that they are all talking about the same event?  Why is the spin so different (even ignoring that expected contrarian from Taiwan)?  It is about management of expectations in the face of reality.

When you set your aims too high and you fail, you will have to say either that you made a mistake in judgment and you are disappointed, or that you knew all along but you lied to the people.  Neither option is desirable.  It just goes to show you how a little bit of realistic expectations earlier could have saved you a lot of trouble afterwards.  Objectively, the pan-democratic camp did fine with more than 60% of the popular vote, which is a measure of success anywhere in the world; but subjectively, the unmet expectations were a letdown.

By comparison, the Liberal Party was spot on with their predictions, while the DAB exceeded expectations.  How did the DAB do that?  For example, they were actually monitoring the exit polls during election day.  By early evening, they realized that their New Territories West candidates were securely elected and they pulled their campaign staff over to New Territories East to work for over there and this may have helped to pull off an unexpected victory over there.  The democrats did not do any exit polls and when the late news about the Hong Kong situation came out from the DAB, the democrats decided that it was opposition misinformation and continued their descent to self-destruction.

[9/13/2004 1:00am]  Overall, the participation rate was a disappointment.  The 53% rate was better than the dismal 2000 elections, but it was not significantly better than the first election in 1998.  This was significantly less than the 60% forecast by the HKU poll, and wildly lower than the 70% fantasy predicted by the Democratic Party.  (Technical note: the final participation rate was 55.6%.)

The projected geographical winners by district are:

Hong Kong: Ma Lik (DAB), Rita Fan (independent), Yeung Sum (DP), Martin Lee (DP), Audrey Eu and Cyd Ho (Frontier/Civil Act-Up!),   (Technical note: the HKU exit poll incorrectly picked Cyd Ho over Choi Yuk-so (DAB).)

Kowloon West: Frederick Fung (ADPL), Lau Chin-shek (independent), Jasper Tsang (DAB), James To (DP)

Kowloon East: Fred Li (DP), Chan Kam-lam (DAB), Albert Cheng (independent), Alan Leong (independent), Chan Yuen-han (HK Federation of Trade Unions)

New Territories West: Albert Chan (independent), Lee Wing-tat (DP), Albert Ho (DP), Leung Yiu-chung (Neighborhood and Workers Service Centre), Tam Yiu-chung (DAB), Cheung Hok-ming (DAB), Selina Chow (Liberal), Lee Cheuk-yan (Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions)

New Territories East: Leung Kwok-hung (April 5th Action), Andrew Cheng (DP), Emily Lau (DP), Ronny Tong (DP), James Tien (Liberal), Lau Kong-wah (DAB) and Li Kwok-ying (DAB).

Overall, if you are rooting for the so-callled pan-democracy camp, then this is disappointing.  There are sixty Legco seats in total, 30 by geography and 30 for functional constituencies.  Of the 30 geographical seats, the so-called pan-democracy camp will likely get 18 (note: the names are in blue), less than the 22 that they wished for.  The blame is being assigned to (1) bad strategy in not running the right candidates in the right districts in the right combinations, whereas their competition looked very smart; and (2) the negative news about their candidates.  In my opinion, the final headline from Ming Pao said more: "It is the Democrats vs. the Loyalists."  I assert that people didn't care about the one or the other because they had seen enough of the circular firing squad act and neither side was appealing directly to them.

In the functional constituencies, the so-called pan-democracy camp has never been strong since these are specialized business sectors who are more interested in economic progress and stability and not in direct elections (which may lead to economic instability).  The  so-called pan-democratic camp is not likely to get more than 5 or 6 seats, so this means they will remain a minority who won't be able to paralyze the government.  However, they have enough people that they will be able to raise hell and provide good entertainment for evening news.

By way of explanation, the Hong Kong Legislative Council was designed by the British administration NOT to legislate in the sense of introducing new laws.  Rather, they can veto whatever legislation that the executive branch of the government proposes.  With a majority, the pan-democracy could paralyze the government, but they still can't dictate policy.  You should ask the British government why this marvelous design was put in place.  Well, the answer is obvious because they clearly wanted to introduce whatever policy that they wanted and they felt that they could bully their way through the Legislative Council.