You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the telling numbers tucked inside the news.
A new Suffolk University/Boston Globe poll gives us a glimpse of an alternate timeline where Mitt Romney entered the 2016 presidential campaign. Thirty-one percent of New Hampshire voters say they would vote for Romney if he were magically on the ballot, which is probably really only helpful for people who can travel across the multiversal plane. [The Boston Globe]
47 to 86 percent
Red Lobster, a chain that serves ostensibly fulfilling seafood, will increase the size of the shrimp in its menu offerings by 47 to 86 percent, depending on the dish. The upgrade affects 70 percent of entrees. [BuzzFeed]
54 years old
Median age of an NPR listener this year, up from 45 in 1995. This trend is worrisome for people at the public radio organization and has led to efforts to recruit new on-air talent. [The Washington Post]
With 100 percent of votes tallied, Democrat John Bel Edwards defeated Sen. David Vitter 56.1 percent to 43.9 percent Saturday in Louisiana’s gubernatorial election. A top issue of the campaign was Vitter’s alleged dalliances with prostitutes. Vitter also announced this weekend that he will not pursue re-election to the Senate when his term is up. [The Lens]
Of the 83,963 people who took the bar exam to become attorneys last year, 60 of them skipped the traditional step of, you know, going to law school. It’s apparently allowed for a lawyer to become official by serving as an “apprentice” under a practicing attorney or a judge. According to last year’s results, 17 of the 60 apprentices who took the bar exam passed it. [Priceonomics]
A massive diamond was found in a mine in Botswana last week. It’s been reported as 1,111 carats, which is helpful for people who know what carats are. I am not one of those people, so I looked it up, and a carat is 200 milligrams (0.2 grams), which is now in metric and thus still not super helpful for Americans. A 142-carat stone weighs an ounce, so we’re talking a half-pound diamond here. [Motherboard]
About 6,300 census documents thought to have been destroyed after World War II were found in the walls of a Budapest apartment. They appear to be early records used in Nazi plans to send the 200,000 Jews of Budapest to death camps. [The Guardian]
A new report from Merrill Lynch projects the global personal robot market to be $17.4 billion in 2020. One major growth sector is robots that care for the infirm, which is especially promising in Japan, where an aging population means there is more demand for elder care than younger Japanese can supply. [Tech Insider]
In important-but-boring merger news, drug giants Pfizer Inc. and Allergan PLC have agreed on terms for a merger worth $150 billion. As a result, Pfizer will be able to be based in Ireland, where corporate taxes are less of a thing, rather than the U.S., where taxes are considered a rather important thing to pay, generally speaking. [The Wall Street Journal]
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