I have always wanted to know whether our efforts of canvassing and voter registration are actually paying off!
Now we have some data. Suffolk County Board of Elections collects data on new voter registrations on a monthly basis. I have compared data published in Feb 2018 with data published on October 1st 2018. New Voter registrations are definitely up (Fig. 1). And it turns out that they are heavily skewed towards Dem. party registration (see Fig. 2). The numbers are actually about 2x higher than in comparable midterm election years from the past. This bodes well for a “blue wave”.
Fig. 1. Data on new voter registrations for Feb 2018 (light blue) versus October 2018 (dark blue).
Fig. 2. New voter registrations are heavily skewed towards the Dem. party, data from October 2018. Not shown are percentages of C, II, WP, U, etc.
These numbers have to be considered in the context of general population changes. It turns out that the general population in Suffolk County has been shrinking steadily. For the period of 2/2018 to 10/2018 the numbers are:
Date 2/2018 10/2018
Suffolk 961,409 954,150 -0.76%
NY-CD1 472,989 470,344 -0.56%
NY-CD2 320,104 316,739 -1.05%
NY-CD3 168,316 167,067 -0.74%
This mirrors a similar decrease in the total population comparing 2015 to 2016 (-0.76%) and 2016 to 2017 (-0.6%). There are still more births than deaths, and more international arrivals than domestic arrivals. Thus, the decrease in the population on eastern Long Island is most likely due to young people leaving Suffolk county, a well-recognised phenomenon. Are these young people that are leaving Suffolk, mainly democrats? Are they being replaced by newly registered people that are also mainly democrats? If this were the case the overall percentages of people in the Dem party would not have changed much. But the data show that the Dem party has been growing faster than any other party in NY CD-1.
Here are the numbers of total registered Dem and Rep voters in NY CD-1 from 2012 and from Oct 2018:
Date 2012 10/2018
Dem 132,683 144,211 +8.7%
Rep 156,075 159,184 +1.99%
All voters 445,374 470,344 +5.61%
Comparing data for all political party registrations between 2012 and 2018, Dems are up +8.7%, Rep +1.99%, Con -2.13%, Indep +5.95%, Unaffiliated +5.32%, Working families -0.32%.
Someone reminded me that newly registered voters don’t have an excellent record of turning out to vote! Here is where we all come in. It’s called GOTV GOTV GOTV GOTV GOTV GOTV GOTV !