Why Our State Voted Way It Did

Anthony Pignataro:

Wanna understand the 2010 midterm elections? Washington, DC-based Project Vote released a new report today to help explain all the hilarity, both national and state-by-state. According to the 26-page report, written largely by Dr. Lorraine C. Minnite, three reasons largely accounted for the huge Republican gains across much of the nation: Seniors came out “in force,” mionrities and youth stayed home and a lot of women moved to the Republican Party.

All seems true, except in California, which pretty much did the opposite of all that:

“Strong turnout in California, expecially among minorites, propelled the Democratic party into a highly contested U.S. Senate seat and an inpressive sweep of top offices in the state,” the report states. “The trends in voting and partisanship are noteworthy because they are in the opposite direction of what we see nationally in this election.”

As for why California went 180 degrees away from the rest of the nation, a big part of the reason seems to be Latinos.

“The total number of ballots cast by Latinos increased by nearly 40 percent, while the rate of growth in ballots cast by whites was below the statewide average at 10 percent,” states the report. “The strong showing by minority groups may account for why those groups at the lower end of the income scale swelled while everyone else mostly held their ground: those earning $30,000 to $50,000 a year increased their share of the electorate from 15 to 19 percent, while those in the $100,000 to $200,000 bracket decreased from 24 to 21 percent.”

NOV. 29, 2010

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