Of course it was. Here’s why.

The above scatter diagram is derived from voting data of the 11 Kuala Lumpur parliamentary constituencies. The x-axis is the percentage of Chinese registered voters in each constituency. The y-axis is the percentage of the total vote garnered by Pakatan in said constituencies.

One could immediately see a correlation between the proportion of Chinese voters and votes for Pakatan. In fact, the linear best fit line shown has an R-squared value of 0.98, which means the correlation is very strong indeed. The formula for the line allows us to estimate how many of the Chinese voted for Pakatan:

Setting x = 100 gives us the percentage of Chinese voters that voted for Pakatan. 0.5381*100 + 35.074 = 89 %

Setting x = 0 gives us the percentage of non-Chinese voters that voted Pakatan. 0.5381*0 + 35.074 = 35 %

So, in KL, approximately 89% of Chinese voters chose Pakatan while only 35% of everyone else did the same.

If everyone across the country voted in the same way as KL voters have, we should expect the number for the country as a whole to be somewhere close to this line. If, as claimed by some, more urban Malays and Indians voted for Pakatan as compared to their rural counterparts, we would expect the national number to be significantly below the line.

Let’s do a quick calculation. According to the SPR, the percentage of total registered voters that are Chinese is 30%. Plug this figure into the formula (0.5381 * 30 + 35.074) and we get 51%. Remember, this is the % of the popular vote we would expect Pakatan to get if the different races voted across the country as they did in KL. What was the actual number? Also 51%.

So, the rural urban divide is a myth. Urban Malays voted in pretty much the same way as rural Malays. The same goes for the Chinese, Indians and everyone else. The predominant factor determining how people voted in GE 13 was their race, not where they lived. The only reason why Pakatan won more urban seats is because there are more Chinese living in urban areas.

**Edit 12 pm 31/05/2013:**

It seems someone has beaten me to the punch 🙂

You can find similar analysis, only much more comprehensive, by Sdr DAH Ikhwan at his excellent blog here.