September 19, 2018


Democratic Primary Turnout Is Up 64%. Will That Matter in November?: Republicans, by comparison, saw 22 percent more people vote this season than in the 2014 midterms. (ALAN GREENBLATT | SEPTEMBER 19, 2018, Governing)

The primary season came to a close last Thursday in New York. Across the country this year, citizens cast nearly 23 million votes in Democratic primaries. That's more than the 19 million votes that were cast in Republican primaries -- and a big jump over the 14 million votes cast in Democratic primaries back in 2014. That year, 15.5 million votes were cast in Republican primaries.

Democratic turnout doubled in 14 states this year, compared with 2014, while doubling in only one state's GOP primary. That was Vermont, where Democratic turnout increased by an even greater percentage. Republican turnout was up at least 70 percent in Connecticut, Florida, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

"Republicans have tended to show up more than Democrats, but there's a lot of enthusiasm among Democrats for remaking the composition of state and local bodies," says Edie Goldenberg, a University of Michigan professor of public policy.

Democrats this year appear to be motivated in large part by the presidency of Donald Trump, whom they view with nearly universal disdain.

"Unfortunately, anger's a pretty powerful motivator, and the left is motivated -- more so by the president and others in Washington than me -- but they're motivated," Wisconsin GOP Gov. Scott Walker told Governing in an interview last month.

Posted by at September 19, 2018 5:42 PM