One of the projects I'm starting is a weekly voter registration tracking report for Duval County. Eventually, I hope the scope of this weekly effort widens to include a five county area making up what is generally accepted as the First Coast: Duval, St. Johns, Clay, Baker and Nassau counties. I don't yet know if the logistics will permit such a report without monetary expenditures or obstacles from the respective supervisor of elections offices. But if they exist and/or can be overcome I will eventually increase the breadth of this report to include the First Coast.
The start date for this initial effort will be 4/4/07 and end on 12/31/07. Weekly tabulations will be posted each Friday charting gains or losses from the previous Friday posting. Once four weeks passes I'll include a graph/chart giving a visual representation of gains for the respective parties: Democrats, Republicans and Others as reported by the office of Duval County Supervisor of Elections. Daily numbers are available for you to see at the that link, but they are not tracked to give you an idea of those gains over a period of time.
Let's take a look at the numbers for our first report - Duval County.
Totals for Friday - 4/13/07
- Total registered voters: 546,239
- Total registered Democrats: 245,234
- Total registered Republicans: 201,337
- Total registered Others: 99,668
Totals for Friday - 4/06/07
- Total registered voters: 545,963
- Total registered Democrats: 245,121
- Total registered Republicans: 201,274
- Total registered Others: 99,568
Gains for the week
- New registered voters: 276
- New registered Democrats: 113
- New registered Republicans: 63
- New registered Others: 100
Gains to date from 4/04/07 to 04/13/07
- New registered voters: 649
- New registered Democrats: 215
- New registered Republicans: 187
- New registered Others: 247
The Democrats win the week by 13 new new registered voters, while they pick up 50 more than the GOP. To date gains since 4/04/07 show new registered voters other than Democrats or Republicans leading the way with 247 beating out the Democrats by 32 and the Republicans by 6o. The Democrats lead Republicans for new registered voters to date (since 4/04/07) by 28. As of 4/13/07 registered Democrats lead Republicans by 43,897.
I'll try and recover the new registered voters from 01/01/07 to 4/03/07 for a more complete annual gains to date picture depending on whether or not the Duval County Supervisor of Elections will supply them to me. I should know by the next report. The current gap between Democrats and Republicans posed some interesting questions.
Conventional wisdom tells us the current slate of registered Democrats are a vestige from a time gone past where a significant number of them are old "Dixiecrats" or conservatives who never bothered to switch parties. My neighbor across the street is a perfect example. As he explained it to me, he's been a registered Democrat since he began voting. But at this stage in his life, he continues to vote GOP in the general election no matter who the Democratic nominee is. Without access to demographic data to track the trends, it would not be unreasonable to conclude that the new registered voters are the key here for the future success of the Democratic Party. If that is the case, the Democrats have their job cut for them if the gap between themselves and the GOP is to widen and thereby erect a built-in advantage that already exists in the actual numbers.