Hillary Clinton’s strong win in New York has solidified her standing as the Democratic presidential frontrunner, and it appears Bernie Sanders’ bid for the nomination is increasingly unlikely.

Trouble looms, though. Clinton remains quite unpopular ahead of the general election, according to the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll.

Dan Balz’ take in The Washington Post on her favorable/unfavorable ratings (emphasis added):

Clinton’s image is at or near record lows among major demographic groups. Among men, she is at minus 40. Among women, she is at minus nine. Among whites, she is at minus 39. Among white women, she is at minus 25. Among white men, she is 17 positive, 72 negative. Her favorability among whites at this point in the election cycle is worse than President Obama’s ever has been… .

Clinton has enjoyed her share of ups and downs during this election cycle and over the years, as she endured national scrutiny during Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential race, the Monica Lewinsky scandal, the 2000 U.S. Senate election and ultimately the failed bid for the nomination in 2008. Her image can rebound.

One measure of her favorability — perhaps a cruel one — is the frequency with which American parents have named their children using the same first name. The name “Hillary” peaked historically in 1992 and then plummeted, according to Social Security card application data released by the federal government.

This chart shows the proportion of parents who named their daughters “Hillary” since 1947, the presidential candidate’s birth year:


Hillary peaked in 1992, when about 2,500 girls received the name — roughly .13 percent of all female names listed in the data. Two years later, only about 400 girls received that name, or about .02 percent.

The figures in both years seem low. But remember that Americans get creative with their kids’ names. There were about 1.84 million girls who received Social Security cards with that birth year, and their parents picked at least 15,000 different name iterations, from Aaisha to Zykeia. Ashley was most popular with about 38,000 applications (or roughly 2 percent of the listed names).

Perhaps Hillary would be slightly more popular if parents conformed (or could spell). In 1992, for example, a few hundred poor souls got these iterations of the presidential candidate’s name: Hilliary, Hillery, Hillari, Hillarie and (my fave!) Hillaree.

My name has taken a roller coaster ride, too. It peaked in 1983, with about 50,000 boys receiving the name — roughly 2.8 percent of the 1.8 million boys who received Social Security cards with that birth year. What caused the name’s rise? Perhaps I’ll never know, though my mother picked it not from the New Testament but from a John Denver song. Thanks, Mom. (At least you spelled it correctly).


Want to see your name? Tell me in the comments.

The post Charting the Popularity of ‘Hillary’ appeared first on The Daily Viz.

Matt Stiles

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