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Significant Digits For Monday, July 2, 2018

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.

“About 5” candidates

President Trump has said he has narrowed down his Supreme Court justice shortlist to “about five” candidates, including two women. Trump said he will announce his nominee to replace the retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy on July 9 — a week from today. [Reuters]


In a broad 5-2 decision on Friday, the Iowa Supreme Court rejected a law in that state that required a 72-hour waiting period for women seeking an abortion, finding that the law violated the right to equal protection under the state constitution. With Kennedy’s retirement, speculation has intensified about the possible overturning of Roe v. Wade by a conservative Supreme Court, shifting focus to state legislatures and courts. [The Des Moines Register]

9 state legislatures

Following the record number of women who won primary elections, there are now nine state legislatures that could potentially be composed of 50 percent or more women after the general elections in November. Nevada tops this list — its statehouse is currently 38 percent women, and could reach as high as 65 percent. Whenever a state legislature does have more women than men, it will be a first in U.S. history. [The New York Times]

25-year sentence

A “notorious gangster,” Redoine Faid, who was serving a 25-year sentence for a robbery during which a police officer was killed, escaped from a prison near Paris. The escape was facilitated by heavily armed associates, a helicopter and a hostage helicopter instructor. This escape only barely eclipses his first escape, five years ago, which involved seized guards, human shields and dynamite. [BBC]

55 complaints per 1,000 people

When neighborhoods gentrify, the “quality-of-life complaints” go up, some of which bring the police. In a clever piece of data analysis, BuzzFeed looked at non-emergency 311 calls in New York City, finding 55 complaints per 1,000 people in areas that gentrified and where the white population had gone up, compared to 46 in areas that didn’t and where the white population had gone down. “Long-term residents said they rarely, if ever, called to complain — if they had a problem, they’d walk outside and say so.” [BuzzFeed News]

109 musicians and 3 conductors

The London Symphony Orchestra is tackling Karlheinz Stockhausen’s “Gruppen,” a “monumental” piece of music that requires no fewer than 109 players, three conductors, and three orchestras each playing at a different tempo. One of the conductors described the piece as “irritatingly complex.” Honestly sounds perfect for 2018. [The New York Times]

If you see a significant digit in the wild, please send it to @ollie.

Oliver Roeder was a senior writer for FiveThirtyEight. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Texas at Austin, where he studied game theory and political competition.