Perhaps the Biggest Q for Democrats in Florida in 2018 is whether Young Black and Hispanic Voters will Turn Out

Although the Anti-Trump vote looms large in Florida, with some independents and Republicans experiencing buyer’s remorse, mobilization of younger people of color remains the key for any prospects of a Blue Wave in Florida.

Here’s turnout, by age, of registered blacks in the 2014 General Election. Turnout among the nearly 1.8m registered blacks in the 2014 midterm was 41.5%.


And here’s turnout of registered Hispanics in the 2014 General Election. Turnout among the 1.9m registered Hispanics in 2014 was just 31.1%.

Contrast minority turnout in Florida in 2014 with white turnout, by age. of the nearly 8.5m registered white voters in Florida in 2014, 51.5% cast ballots in the November election.

If Democrats–from Bill Nelson and Andrew Gillum on down–are going to win in Florida, there needs to be massive GOTV to mobilize younger minority voters to the polls.

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.

 

Think those last-minute registrants who vote in the upcoming election will turn out in future elections? Think again.

My latest research, coauthored with UF PhD candidate, Enrijeta Shino.

Timing the Habit

Online version available here.

 

Florida 2016 Presidential Vote by Precinct, by Method of Voting

TotVoters_ABTurnout_PrecinctResults1TotVoters_EVTurnout_PrecinctResults1TotVoters_EDTurnout_PrecinctResults1

(In each graph, the X-Axis is a precinct’s Election Day or Vote-By-Mail or Early In-Person votes cast out of total votes cast in that precinct by all three methods. The Y-Axis is Trump’s and Clinton’s share of total votes cast out of votes for all presidential candidates for each of the three methods.)

The New York Time’s @Nate_Cohn finds “Turnout Wasn’t the Driver of Clinton’s Defeat,” but in FL, Trump crushed Clinton in precincts that had high turnout and in those where White’s cast greater share of ballots on Election Day

Nate asks, “So how much did turnout contribute to Mr. Trump’s victory? As the party registration numbers and turnout figures by race imply, just a bit. But Mr. Trump won the election by just a bit — by only 0.7 percentage points in Pennsylvania, for example.”

That seems reasonable.

Let’s take a closer look at the precinct results in Florida.

Trump crushed Clinton across Florida’s precincts that had high voter turnout, as the figure below reveals (with the size of the precincts weighted by the total votes cast).  Trump won a greater share of the total votes cast in the smattering of low turnout precincts, but more impressively, in precincts with turnout (of registered voters) that exceeded 75%. For example, he won more than 60% of the total votes cast (which includes write-ins and 3rd party votes) in precincts with greater than 90% turnout.

TotVoters_OverallTurnout_PrecinctResults

Trump also crushed Clinton in precincts that had high rates of Whites voting on Election Day. The figure below reveals that Trump won bigly in precincts in which Whites comprised more than 65% of those who waited until Election day to turn out (precinct size is weighted by Election Day Turnout).

WhiteEDVoters_PrecinctResultsWeightTurnout

So, it appears that that Trump did well in Florida not only in precincts with high voter turnout, but also in those where White voters turned out on Election Day.

More to come…