During the nine-week period between May 13, 2017 and July 8, 2017, North Carolina’s voter rolls grew by 24,486 voters. Democrats saw a net gain of 1,902 voters; Republicans gained 5,276 voters, Libertarians picked up 484 voters and the unaffiliated ranks grew by 16,824 voters.
Just two months ago, Republicans outnumbered the unaffiliated ranks by 24,676 voters. On July 15th, that number has shrunk to 13,128. If the trend continues, it will only be a few short months before there are more unaffiliated voters in North Carolina than Republicans. While this will be a noteworthy development in one of North Carolina’s two major political parties, the real change is taking place among Democrats where voter registration continues to lag significantly behind Republicans and unaffiliated voters each month.
In fact, the Democrats are the only segment of the political registration rolls to have decreased since 2009. The voter registration trend that began in January 2009 shows no sign of stopping. Each week Democrats either lose voters or make only negligible gains while Republicans can count on adding voters. It’s among the Unaffiliated voting population where the voter registration explosion is occurring though. Since January 2009, Democrats have experienced a net loss of 229,645 voters, Republicans a net gain of 49,317 voters and the unaffiliated ranks have gained a total of 638,613 voters.
There are nine counties where unaffiliated voters out-number both the Republicans and the Democrats twenty-four counties where unaffiliated voters outnumber only Democrats and thirty-nine counties where they outnumber only Republicans.
On July 15, 2017 Democrats made up 39.0 percent (2,640,128) of registered voters, down from 45.7 percent in January 2009, Republicans made up 30.4 percent (2,053,920), down from 31.9 percent, and unaffiliated voters are at 30.2 percent (2,039,067) up from 22.3 percent in January 2009.
You can watch voter registration change in your county and statewide each week and see all the historical statistics and more by visiting Civitas’ Carolina Transparency website: www.carolinatransparency.com/voterregistration . The website is updated each week with data straight from the State Board of Elections. The website allows users to compare data week to week, month to month and even year to year.
Marylin Pfoutz says
Many long time Democrats and some Republicans are sick of their party’s behavior and are going independent rather than going to the two main parties. There is only one problem. They can’t vote in every election.. Last fall while working at RNC office many came in and changed to Republican or independent.. Patriotic people do not want to belong to the socialist/ communist globalist democrat party.. and lifetime democrats do not want to be republicans, but realize its not the same old party as it used to be. Just sayin’.
Larry Bumgarner says
We Unaffiliated are a diverse group.
First, we make a Candidate, or current Elected Official, show us that they deserve our vote. We do this by not sitting in the party stable with them expecting us to vote for them as the Party System currently allows at their leisure.
And we do our own research on candidates. No need for the daily missives and talking points as we have the full story.
Sadly several studies have shown that the average voter spends more time on researching a new car than they do for the Candidate which will control their lives.
We like to ask, why vote for people who have excellent party skills and very poor ethical, financial management, and overall life skills.
So thank you for noticing how fast we are growing, with honesty and research we can change things for the better.
On Twitter @unaffiliated http://www.Unaffiliated.us
The only problem I have with Republicans is some of them are like Democrats when they get elected.Tom Tillis is a perfect example.I voted against him in the primary and will again.How anybody could vote for a party that doesn’t have enough sense to know what bathroom to use is beyond me.I used to be a Democrat but could never vote for another.They are not Democrats anymore.
Omer Causey says
A significant portion of the Republicans I know who have abandoned the GOP in favor of unaffiliated status did so because theyvare Trump supporters. They don’t believe the GOP is all in for Trump, and that the RNC is supporting incumbent obstructionists rather than new blood who will back Trump’s America First agenda.
Houston VanHoy says
Thanks for the interesting numbers. I’d like to see equivalent comparisons for Mecklenburg County (and Charlotte separately), the Triangle (and Chapel Hill separately), the Triad, New Hanover County and Asheville.
Rich Rochester says
Yes, the democrat party is not the party of the “little guy” any more and they haven’t been for the last 40 years. Who knows why they are just now taking notice and changing their voting habits. I consider myself a staunch conservative independent voter and if faced with the wacky behavior of my party (if there was such a party, of course), I would have changed long ago. You know, it actually is part of the criteria to determine intelligence if one is capable of noticing patterns. Well, this has been a major failure for democrats, as I said, for 40 years.
Walt de Vries, Ph.D. says
Susan: As this trend continues, what conclusions do you reach as to what this development of three major parties means for North Carolina elections?
ML Hynes says
Thanks, Susan for another great article and a reminder that Carolinatransparency.com has the best presentation of voter registeration data for each and every one of our 100 counties. Great work!
Michelle Haller says
The most disturbing aspect of this trend for me as a Republican is that we continue to allow Unaffiliated voters to cast votes in our primaries. I believe it should be Republicans and Republicans only who pick our party’s candidates. When will this ever be addressed?