California Primary Turnout Press

Speaking of Feb. 5 turnout numbers

Dan Walters reports on turnout over at Capitol Alert:

The final numbers are in, and they reaffirm the almost uncanny accuracy of the Field Poll’s prediction that 56.6 percent of California’s registered voters would cast ballots…

Frank D. Russo of the California Progress Report breaks down some of the numbers:

…the highest primary turnout on a percentage basis since 1980. The highest-ever percentage turnout in a primary was nearly 73% in 1976.
…the voter registration rate is up in addition to the turnout being up. And—it’s Democrats who are turning out to vote.
Amongst the largest counties in the state, those with strong Democratic majorities turned out at a rate significantly higher than the statewide average, with San Francisco at 64.5% and Santa Clara at 66.4%. San Diego County, as mentioned before, had more Democrats turning out than Republicans, and had 60.7% of all voters voting.

The exception is Los Angeles County—home to a third of California’s voters. Only 55% of LA voters voted. This is where Democrats have their work cut out for them and a real opportunity.

Part of this is that the Los Angeles County Clerk/Registrar has not aggressively pointed out to voters that they can vote by mail. Overall, 41.7% of those voting in California did so by mail and 58.3% voted at the polls. A look at the Secretary of State’s numbers show that only 28% of Angelenos voted by mail.

The San Diego Union-Tribune says:

In Riverside County, tabulating election results took longer than expected because of the switch from computer screen voting back to paper ballots.

See Tim Herdt’s Ventura County Star column as well:

. . . numbers suggest that Republicans can no longer count on a voter-turnout advantage that in the past has helped GOP candidates overcome the party’s minority status in voter registration.

“Republicans have almost always done better because they have the people who always vote,” said Republican analyst Tony Quinn. “But this year you had the reverse.”

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