DemDaily: The New Voter Myth

May 17, 2016
 While we are accustomed to a lack of foundation in almost anything that comes out of Donald Trump's mouth - the latest Politico article shooting down his claim of drawing "millions and millions" of new voters to the Republican Party was particularly comforting.
Their analysis of primary and general election numbers shows that the majority of voters in the record-setting turnout in the early Republican primaries were, in fact, not new to voting or to the Republican Party. They were simply voting for the first time in a primary election.
While the record-setting numbers may translate to manpower and money for the GOP, it historically does not translate into general election outcome.
Some examples:
  
In Iowa, the Republican caucus turnout increased by 50% but 95% of the 2016 caucusgoers had previously voted in at least one of the past four presidential elections.

And in Florida, Republican primary turnout jumped by 40% from 2012 to 2016, but 94% had voted in the 2012 or 2014 general elections.

According to Pew Research Center's Drew DeSilver, "Of the past six presidential elections with competitive primaries in both parties, the party with the higher primary turnout has won more votes in the fall only three times. There is definitely not a correlation between turnout in the primaries and success in the general election."
The general election contest begins after the party nominating conventions in July and concludes just 175 days from today.  We will keep you informed!
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Kimberly Scott
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