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Significant Digits For Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016

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

$1,500 per hour

Hourly rates at large corporate law firms have increased 3 percent to 4 percent per year since the recession, meaning that at several white shoe firms the hourly rate is north of $1,500 for senior partners. Must be nice. [The Wall Street Journal]

3.5-foot gator

A Florida man was arrested Monday after throwing a 3.5-foot alligator through the drive-thru window of a Wendy’s restaurant back in October. The 23-year-old’s parents are saying it was just a prank, but here’s some free advice: Stop talking! I’m telling you, billing this as an elaborate if poorly thought out protest of the increasing price of the Baconator is the way to play this one. [WPTV]


It’s New Hampshire primary day! Dixville Notch, a small municipality nobody cares about 99.93 percent of the time, is the first town to vote in the first-in-the-nation New Hampshire presidential primary. It’s not a lot of people, but this year, Bernie Sanders beat Hillary Clinton 4-0, while on the Republican side, John Kasich got 3 votes to Donald Trump’s 2. [CNN]

10 percent

After a year in which its most recognizable national figure was Martin Shkreli, the pharmaceutical lobby PhRMA is working on a public relations blitz this year. The business group is planning on spending 10 percent more on advertisements promoting the pharmaceutical business than it did in 2015. While it’s a whole different kind of P.R., PhRMA spent $18.4 million lobbying the federal government in 2014. [The Wall Street Journal]

60 games

The UConn Huskies women’s basketball team won a 60th consecutive victory after defeating the South Carolina Gamecocks. [ESPN]

70 percent

Yeah, Donald Trump is probably going to win New Hampshire based on the FiveThirtyEight model. He’s got a 70 percent chance of pulling it off. Somewhat surprisingly for people from New Jersey, Gov. Chris Christie has less than a 1 percent chance of pulling off a win, down from 10 percent as recently as Christmas, despite spending a whole lot of time up there and not so much down here. [FiveThirtyEight]


The most recent year where someone was killed by a meteorite. An incident in India where a person was allegedly killed by a meteorite would roll the Days-Since-Meteorite-Accident calendar over to 2016 if confirmed. [The Washington Post]


How much the Clinton campaign spent on Dunkin’ Donuts in 2015, the highest of any campaign, the vast majority of which I can only assume was spent by the New Hampshire crew on Coffee regulars. Marco Rubio leads the pack in Starbucks runs, dropping $386 at the chain compared to a mere $235 at Dunkin’. []


Approximate number of Free Staters who live in New Hampshire. The Free Stater movement seeks to move a whole bunch of Libertarians to a small state in order to effect legislation at a statewide level. Now that the petition for the Free State Project reached 20,000 signatures thanks to a Facebook push, those 20,000 signatories have pledged to moved to New Hampshire within 5 years. [Fusion]

789,133 signatures

Michigan’s Board of State Canvassers approved a petition to recall Gov. Rick Snyder, who has been the subject of intense scrutiny as the city of Flint was left with poisonous lead-tainted water. The recall bid has to collect 789,133 signatures within a 60-day period over the next 180 days in order for the recall question to get on a state ballot. [Michigan Live]

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Walt Hickey was FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.