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The Campaign Trail
Trump, GOP Benefitted More Than Democrats From Same Day Registration Voters PDF Print E-mail
The Campaign Trail
By Administrator   
Friday, 27 January 2017 13:09
In a finding that contradicts conventional wisdom,  Donald Trump and other North Carolina Republican candidates benefited from a surge of voters who used same-day registration during early voting at a higher rate than Democrats. The Republicans were 30% of registered voters in October 2016, but 34% of the first-time voters who used same day registration to cast a ballot. 
 
Non-whites also disproportionately used same-day registration, but in smaller numbers than the new Republicans according to Bob Hall of Democracy North Carolina. 
 
New data from the State Board of Elections show that 69% of North Carolina’s 6.9 million registered voters cast ballots in the 2016 presidential election, just 1 percent behind the modern turnout record set in 2008. But an analysis by the voting rights group Democracy North Carolina reveals wide variations in who showed up and who didn’t among 47 subgroups of voters.
 
At the top of the list: Three out of four Republican women (76%) participated in the election, a record for that group. Republican men also had a strong showing, with a turnout rate of 75%, followed by Democratic women, particularly African-American Democratic women (72%).
 
By contrast, Democratic men lagged 10 points behind Republican men, and more than one third of the voters who are not affiliated with any party didn’t bother to cast a ballot. In fact, the  number of registered unaffiliated voters who didn’t vote (763,000) exceeded the number of
Republican men who did (756,000).
 
Nearly half the registered voters in the 18-25 age group also did not vote. Their 53% turnout rate fell below the 60% achieved in 2008 and 55% level in 2012. On the other hand, a record 78% of registered voters over age 65 showed up; as a group, they cast over 1 million ballots for the first
time, thanks to aging Baby Boomers.
 
African-American women continued to participate at the highest rates of all non-white voters, and their overall 70% turnout rate nearly matched the 72% rate for registered white women. Overall, women outperformed men in every party and race subgroups; in fact, 515,000 more women voted in 2016 than men. That’s not too surprising since women are 54% of the registered voters in the state.
 
The statewide turnout of 68.9% is slightly above the rate in 2012 (68.3%) and slightly below the modern record of 69.6% set in 2008, when Barack Obama carried the state.
 
Nationally, North Carolina had the 11th highest turnout rate for eligible citizens, the same rank it held among the 50 states in 2012. That’s a big jump from ranking 37th in 2000 and 38th in 2004.
 
“The share of Tar Heel citizens who vote has risen dramatically in recent presidential elections, largely because of galvanizing personalities at the top of the ticket and new policies that have made voting easier,” said Bob Hall of Democracy North Carolina.
 
“North Carolina ranked among the 15 worst states for voter turnout throughout the entire  twentieth century,” Hall noted. “It only began gaining ground with the expansion of early voting and policies like same-day registration that help infrequent voters and people who get engaged late in the election cycle.”
 
The number of self-identified Hispanic/Latino registered voters has steadily climbed in North Carolina, from 68,000 in 2008 to 167,000 in 2016, but their turnout rate of 58% continues to lag behind. That’s partly because they are younger voters, said Hall. “About 30% of registered Latino voters are in the 18-to-25 age group, compared to 10% of white voters,” he pointed out.
 
The Democracy NC analysis shows a turnout gap between white and black registered voters of 7 percentage points (71% for whites versus 64% for blacks), which is the same gap that existed in 2004 (66% vs. 59%).
 
In the 2008 and 2012 elections when Barack Obama was on the ballot, turnout of African-American voters exceeded the rate of white voters and hit a modern record of 72% in 2008. (Turnout reached higher levels in the 1880s and 1890s in North Carolina before Jim Crow laws
and extra-legal disenfranchisement took effect.)
 
“Not surprisingly, turnout among black voters in 2016 fell below the high levels of the Obama elections,” said Hall. “The good news is that it rose above the persistent low levels in the state before Obama, which were often below 60% in presidential years. Hopefully, we’ve reached a new plateau and will grow from there – unless new barriers to the ballot are put in place.”
 
The analysis also includes three relatively small groups of voters with participation rates below the state average: Libertarians, Native Americans and Asians.
 
The number of Libertarian Party members has jumped from under 4,000 in 2008 to over 32,400 in 2016, but only 57% of them bothered to vote this year, despite having Libertarian candidates on the ballot for president, US senator, and governor.
 
The number of registered Native Americans in North Carolina increased more slowly to 56,700 but only 51% of them voted in 2016, the lowest participation rate of any racial or ethnic classification on the registration rolls.
 
Finally, the number of Asian voters has climbed quickly to 81,200. Their 63% turnout rate is “fairly good considering the fact that 51% of Asian voters are age 40 or younger,” Hall said. 
Last Updated on Friday, 27 January 2017 13:15
 
McCrory Spent $100,000 Challenging Election Results PDF Print E-mail
The Campaign Trail
By Administrator   
Wednesday, 25 January 2017 12:59
Pat McCrory spent $260,000 to challenge absentee ballots, vote-counting practices and voter eligibility according to the Raleigh News and Observer.
 
Roy Cooper defeated Republican incumbent Pat McCrory by 10,227 votes out of 4.7 million votes cast.
 
To fuel his challenge, McCrory spent approximately $64,000 on attorneys fees challenging the results and $46,563 on campaign staff who stayed on into December. 
 
The News and Observer reports McCrory had help from Senator Richard Burr and Congressman Richard Hudson who contributed $4,000 each to the former governor's legal defense fund.
 
In total, McCrory raised $15.8 million during 2015 and 2016, while Cooper raised $24.7 million. The paper reports those totals do not include outside spending. 
 
Urban Cowboy - Cooper Rode To The Governor's Mansion By Lassoing Big Counties PDF Print E-mail
The Campaign Trail
By Administrator   
Wednesday, 25 January 2017 12:47
An analysis performed by Joseph Keefer shows that Roy Cooper won the Governor's mansion by handily winning the state's most populous counties.
 
Keefer calculated that Cooper defeated incumbent Pat McCrory a combined 63 to 37 percentage in Wake, Mecklenburg, Guilford, Forsyth, Cumberland, Durham and Buncombe counties.
 
In the remaining 93 counties, McCrory defeated Cooper by a combined 58 percent to 42 percent. Keefer told the Raleigh News and Observer that his findings indicate a “mega-counties versus the rest of the state” dynamic instead of the conventional traditional urban/rural divide. 
 
The N&O reports Keefer is a communications professor and former journalist. 
Last Updated on Wednesday, 25 January 2017 13:02
 
U.S. Supreme Court Puts 2017 Special Elections On Hold PDF Print E-mail
The Campaign Trail
By Administrator   
Wednesday, 11 January 2017 14:24
North Carolina's 2017 special legislative elections ordered by the 4th Circuit Court Appeals are on hold thanks to the United States Supreme Court. 
 
The delay is so the Supreme Court can review an appeal to the special elections filed by North Carolina's Republican legislative leaders. The full Supreme Court will begin its review on January 19.   
 
A 4th Circuit panel ordered  a 2017 election was justified ruling “while special elections have costs, those costs pale in comparison to the injury caused by allowing citizens to continue to be represented by legislators elected pursuant to a racial gerrymander.”
In their appeal, Republicans argued that holding special elections is an extreme remedy.
 
Senate Leader Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) and House Speaker Tim Moore (R-Cleveland) issued the following joint statement Tuesday after the U.S. Supreme Court halted a lower court’s ruling to throw out the results of the 2016 legislative elections.
 
“We are grateful the U.S. Supreme Court has quashed judicial activism and rejected an attempt to nullify the votes of North Carolinians in the 2016 legislative elections.”
 
Berger and Moore pointed out that the legislative districts that are being challenged were pre-cleared by the Obama Justice Department and twice upheld by the North Carolina Supreme Court.
 
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