Archives for category: Voter Registration

I merged information about the birthplace of the 13m registered voters in Florida with precinct results in the 2016 General Election.  The following figure reveals the two party vote for Trump and Clinton in those Florida precincts that had at least 100 Puerto Rican-born registered voters who voted in the 2016 General Election. Each of the precincts’ voters were at least 50% Hispanic, and at least 1/5 of those Hispanics who voted were Puerto Rican-born.  In other words, these are about as Puerto Rican of precincts in Florida as it gets.

For example, in these majority-Hispanic voter precincts, in which, say (on the X-Axis), 30% of Hispanics who voted were Puerto Rican-born (and that have at least 100 PR-born voters), Trump won only 30% of the vote, on average. He did very poorly in all of the predominantly Puerto Rican precincts.

PR 2016 Vote

Does this mean that Republicans are in trouble in FL if the exodus from PR to the mainland happens? Puerto Ricans, certainly compared with other Hispanic groups in Florida, have weak voter turnout.  Of the more than 180k PR-born voters in my database, only 112k of them voted in 2016 (62%). That’s much lower turnout rate than, say, Cuban-born voters in FL. In 2016, 242k of the 325k Cuban-born naturalized citizens in my database turned out; that’s roughly 75% turnout.

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With an extra hour from daylight savings, I was able to crunch some new numbers…

According to the Florida Department of State, Division of Elections transparent by rather cryptic website, over 107k voters registered between October 11 and October 28.  According to the DSDE’s website, “Pursuant to a court order, Florida’s voter registration deadline for the 2016 General Election was extended from October 11 to 5:00 PM on October 18. The Department of State’s Division of Elections is committed to ensuring that all eligible Floridians who submitted a complete voter registration application by the extended voter registration deadline can vote.”

As the expert who crunched the numbers for the plaintiffs in that federal lawsuit (Florida Democratic Party v. Richard Scott) I’m obviously interested in the numbers of new registrants.

For some reason, DSDE’s website of daily activity reports provides only the “total number of voter registration applications verified and made active, and voter registration applications in the verification process, on or after October 11.”

Here’s the final running count provided by DSDE.

Date Applications Verified & Active (Registered Voters)
10/11/16 – 10/28/16 (4:12 PM) 107,085

I’m not sure why October 11 registrations are provided as the start date of the running total, as that was the regular final day (bookclosing) to register to vote in Florida prior to the court’s extended week of VR.  The DSDE’s processed voter registration dates also run through October 28; these voters who were processed after the October 18 extension should be eligible to cast regular ballots in the November 2016 General Election, as the DSDE states that, “The Department will be providing updated daily numbers until the state provides statistical bookclosing (voter registration) reports for the upcoming General Election.” [emphasis added]

Below are the party and demographic breakdowns of the 90,695 Floridians who were successfully processed by the state’s 67 county SOEs and the DSDE and recorded in the statewide voter file as being registered to vote on October 12 (the first extended day per the court’s order) through October 18, 2016.

PARTY

Democrats: 28,357 (31%)

Republicans: 23,410 (26%)

NPAs: 36,414 (40%)

3rd Parties: 2,514 (3%)

 

RACE/ETHNICITY

Black: 10,782 (12%)

Hispanic: 19,239 (21%)

White: 45,050 (50%)

All Others: 15,624 (17%)

 

AGE

18-29: 32,448 (36%)

30-44: 22,939 (25%)

45-59: 18,042 (20%)

60-105: 13,810 (4%)

Other (Pre-Registrant; Over-105; Redacted): 3,456

 

These October 2016 figures comport to my expert report in the FDP v. Scott lawsuit, where I find that in 2012, the more than 116,000 individuals who successfully registered to vote in the final six days before the October 9, 2012 bookclosing were disproportionately more likely to be racial/ethnic minorities and younger (I was not asked to look at the party of the registrants by the plaintiffs).

Gaining a hour of sleep (work) feels pretty good, but not nearly as good as I feel having done my part to extend the voter registration deadline in Florida.  Pretty amazing what a little tweet can do…

scott_vr_matthew

On December 31, 2012, a month and change after President Obama’s re-election when he carried Florida a second time, of the 12.6m registered voters in Florida (including Active, Inactive, and Pre-registered 16 & 17 year-olds ), Democrats comprised 40%, No Party Affiliates (NPAs) made up 21%, and Republicans accounted for 35% of the electorate.

Flash-forward to August 31, 2016. Democrats now make up only 38%, NPAs are up to 24%, and Republicans continue to comprise roughly 35% of the overall statewide electorate, which now weighs in at a hefty 13.7m registered voters.

And there was much rejoicing among Republicans…as the gap between registered Democrats and Republicans had narrowed, from roughly 595k to just 419k of all Active, Inactive, and Pre-registered voters on the statewide voter rolls, as of August 31, 2016.

But as I’ve tirelessly Tweeted and conversed with the media, this narrowing (by 176k voters) does not mean that Republicans have out-registered Democrats over the past 3 1/2 years.

As I’ve repeatedly shown, Democrats have actually out-registered Republicans over this period of time. 

Below I report the 2.32m newly registered voters, by party, of those who registered between January 1, 2013 and August 31, 2016 and who are still in the voter file. These are not voters who registered prior to January 1, 2013 and who subsequently changed their party registrations. No, these are NEWLY registered voters over the 3 1/2 years as of August 31, 2016.

fl-2013-2016aug-new-registrations-by-party

As the table shows, of the 2.32m voters who registered during the 44 month period and who are in the statewide Florida voter file (as of August 31, 2016), 31% are registered as Democrats, 38% are NPAs, and 28% are Republicans.

In real numbers, over 80k more Democrats than Republicans are in the voter file who registered during the 3 1/2 year period. More precisely, for those of you who really like facts, as of August 31, 2016, there are 80,329 more Democrats who registered since January 1, 2013 than Republicans who registered over the same period of time and who are in the statewide voter file as of August 31, 2016.

So, with Democrats out-pacing Republicans on new registrations over the past 44 months, how is it possible that the the registration gap between the Democratic and Republican parties has closed by some 176k registered voters, with the relative percentage of Republicans growing and the percentage of Democrats decreasing?

The main reason is that the attrition rate over the past 44 months of previously registered Democrats is larger than that of Republicans who were registered prior to January 1, 2013. Some 1.24m voters have ‘exited’ the voter file over the 3 1/2 years.  Some 514.9k Democrats who were registered prior to 2012 are no longer on the rolls; 435.8k Republicans who were on the books back on December 31, 2012, are no longer registered to vote.

That’s a Democratic disadvantage of 79k voters, and it largely accounts for the Republicans closing the overall voter registration gap in the Sunshine State.

The balance –some 97k voters — accounting for Republicans closing the statewide voter registration lead held by Democrats is due to party-switching.

Of the 11.3m voters in Florida who were registered on January 1, 2013 and who remained on the voter rolls on August 31, 2016, some 216k former Democrats are no longer (as of August 31, 2016) registered with the Democratic Party. There’s also been party-switching among formerly registered Republicans, but it has not been as drastic: some 120k registered voters who were registered as Republicans on December 31, 2012 are no longer registered Republicans (as of August 31, 2016).

I’ll have fuller examination of  party-switching in a subsequent post, as I’m currently working on an academic paper on the topic that delves down into much greater detail.

So there you have it. The great mystery of the narrowing voter registration gap between Democrats and Republicans in Florida has been solved.

No conspiracy. No skewing of the data. Just the facts.

Yes, I know facts are tough to swallow for some, especially in these heated times.

But if you just chew on them long enough, you really can digest them. Really. Just try.

I still have hope that the United States can become a Mastication Nation.

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