ICYMI, check out my report for @ACLUFL, “Vote-By-Mail Ballots Cast in Florida”

Check out my report for the ACLU of Florida,  “Vote-By-Mail Ballots Cast in Florida.” Vote-by-mail ballots cast in the 2012 and 2016 general election had a higher rejection rate than votes cast at assigned precincts on Election Day and at early voting sites, and more importantly, younger voters and racial and ethnic minority voters were much more likely to cast mail ballots that were rejected and were less likely to have their ballots cured.

Full report is available here.

How did Heavily Haitian Precincts in Florida Vote in the 2016 General Election? (Let’s just say, I expect Trumpian Ron DeSantis to do even worse than Trump.)

The precincts below have at least 100 Hatian-born naturalized citizens who voted in the 2016 General Election, and at least 50% of those who turned out in the precinct are black (according to the statewide voter file). Most of these heavily Haitian precincts are in Miami-Dade County, but several others are in Palm Beach and Broward counties. There are even a couple in Orange County. Despite having druthers over (or downright anger towards) the Clinton Foundation and its overt meddling over the years in Haitian elections and ineffective disaster relief, every one of these heavily Haitian precincts went heavily for Hillary, most with well above 80% of the two-party vote.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis’ comment, that Florida shouldn’t “monkey this up” by electing Democrat nominee, Andrew Gillum, only adds to the pile President Trump started when he referred to Haiti and some African nations as “shithole countries.”

Haiti 2016 precinct vote

Is Black Turnout going to Increase in Florida’s 2018 General Election with Andrew Gillum as the Democratic Nominee?

In the 2016 General Election, younger African American registered voters in Florida didn’t turn out to vote. For Andrew Gillum to have a shot at winning in November, that has to change.

Here’s a plot of the count of registered black voters in Florida as of December 2016, by gender (excluding those with missing data).

Surprising no one, there were nearly 300,000 fewer black men registered voters in Florida than black females in late 2016. The biggest gap between black men and women registered in Florida is among those in their middle-age. For more on the missing black population (which then relates to registered voters and representation), you might want to read of an article by my coauthors and me.

But when it comes to turnout, in the November 2016 election younger (18-26 year olds) black registered voters–male and female alike–were much more likely to stay home than go to the polls than older African Americans in Florida.

As the plot below reveals, though, younger black males accounted for a disproportionate amount of the turnout gap in Florida’s 2016 General Election. For example, as shown above, although there were over 120,000 blacks aged 21-24 years-old who didn’t vote in 2016, nearly 70,000 of those who didn’t vote were registered black men (as the plot below reveals).

We’ll see if these distributions continue this coming November with Andrew Gillum on the ballot. The 2018 gubernatorial race in Florida is all about mobilization of the base.

Latest article in Political Behavior on early voting in North Carolina in 2016

Hannah L. Walker, Michael C. Herron, Daniel A. Smith, “Early Voting Changes and Voter Turnout: North Carolina in the 2016 General Election,” Political Behavior (Online June 25, 2018).

Available here.

Abstract

North Carolina offers its residents the opportunity to cast early in-person (EIP) ballots prior to Election Day, a practice known locally as “One-Stop” voting. Following a successful legal challenge to the state’s controversial 2013 Voter Information and Verification Act, North Carolina’s 100 counties were given wide discretion over the hours and locations of EIP voting for the 2016 General Election. This discretion yielded a patchwork of election practices across the state, providing us with a set of natural experiments to study the effect of changes in early voting hours on voter turnout. Drawing on individual-level voting records from the North Carolina State Board of Elections, our research design matches voters on race, party, and geography. We find little evidence that changes to early opportunities in North Carolina had uniform effects on voter turnout. Nonetheless, we do identify areas in the presidential battleground state where voters appear to have reacted to local changes in early voting availability, albeit not always in directions consistent with the existing literature. We suspect that effects of changes to early voting rules are conditional on local conditions, and future research on the effects of election law changes on turnout should explore these conditions in detail.

 

Get it while it’s hot! “Election Daze: Voting Modes and Voter Preferences in the 2016 Presidential Election” (with Seth McKee and Trey Hood)

Daniel A. Smith, Seth C. McKee, and M. V. “Trey” Hood III, “Election Daze: Voting Modes and Voter Preferences in the 2016 Presidential Election,” Florida Political Chronicle 25:2 (2018), 123-141.

ABSTRACT: To say that the outcome of the 2016 Presidential Election was a surprise to many political experts would easily qualify as an understatement for the ages. Nonetheless, in defense of the political handicappers, there is notable evidence that the dynamics of voter choice in the days leading up to the last day of voting were differentiable from preferences registered on Election Day. That is, in some states it would seem that Hillary Clinton (Democrat) was advantaged by early voting and Donald Trump (Republican) was favored by voters who came to the polls on Election Day. This paper draws on aggregate- and individual-level data from Florida to examine voting across racial/ethnic groups, distinguishing between votes cast on Election Day with those cast early in-person and by mail in the 2016 Presidential Election. The paper also compares variation across modes of voting in 2016 with 2012 county-level Presidential Election returns. By leveraging original datasets that merge the modes of voting for different groups with aggregate presidential results, as well as using 2016 Cooperative Congressional Election Study (CCES) individual-level data, we are able to determine the extent to which the story of Trump’s historic Presidential victory hinged on the support he garnered from voters who showed up on the final day of voting.

Available here.