Democrats’ Voter Registration Lead Shrivels in Battleground States

Voters cast their ballots on Election Day November 04, 2008, at Centreville High School in Clifton, Virginia. Americans crowded polling stations Tuesday to vote in their historic election, with front-running Democrat Barack Obama seeking to become the first black US president and Republican rival John McCain battling for a comeback. …
PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP via Getty Images

Democrats’ voter registration lead has drastically shrunk in battleground states across the country, striking fear into Democrats that the 2022 midterms will be a red wave.

In Florida, Democrats are only leading Republicans in voter registration by 24,000. That number has come down substantially from 100,000 in January. When Obama ran for office in 2008, for instance, the state had over 700,000 more registered Democrats.

Pennsylvania Democrats are also dropping registered voters. In just two years, Republicans have gained nearly 200,000 voters. Democrats currently lead Republicans by 632,000, down from 813,885.

In North Carolina, the Democrats’ advantage has dropped 140,000 since October 2019. “There are fewer active registered Democrats on the books in North Carolina now than there were six years ago,” the Hill reports.

A Democrat National Committee member in Florida, Thomas Kennedy, told the Hill the trend is very concerning.

“Obviously it’s concerning,” said Kennedy. “There are alarm bells ringing and I think the party and different groups are taking notice and trying to fill in the gaps.”

“I do think that the Republicans have put a lot of emphasis on voter registration,” he added. “For Democrats, there hasn’t been a robust voter registration operation like there needs to be in Florida since the Obama era. There’s this emphasis on third-party groups and nonprofits filling in that gap.”

It should be noted Florida Democrats have tried to shore up their voter registration. Former gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum, who lost to Gov. Ron DeSantis in Florida in 2018, put himself in charge of increasing Democrat registrations, but he and his plans imploded.

MIAMI, FL - SEPTEMBER 24: Democratic Florida gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum speaks at a campaign rally where he received the endorsement of three major national, state and South Florida LGBT groups on September 24, 2018 in Miami, Florida. Gillum sought to portray himself as a champion of LGBT rights while casting his Republican foe Ron DeSantis as hostile to those rights. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

MIAMI, FL – SEPTEMBER 24: Democratic Florida gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum speaks at a campaign rally where he received the endorsement of three major national, state and South Florida LGBT groups on September 24, 2018 in Miami, Florida. Gillum sought to portray himself as a champion of LGBT rights while casting his Republican foe Ron DeSantis as hostile to those rights. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Shortly after losing to DeSantis, Gillum was found in Miami with “a male sex worker, baggies that the cops suspected contained crystal meth and other narcotics, and a third man.” Gillum was married with children.

The debacle left Democrats hanging in the state. But that has not deterred the Democrat National Committee (DNC) from creating a new effort in 2022 to only reach “communities of color” in battleground states, such as Arizona, Florida, Texas, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Nevada.

“Voter registration is immensely important, but it’s not the end-all be-all,” a national Democrat strategist conveyed to the Hill. “That being said, I think with a lot of these new voter restrictions, with the political landscape in 2022 being what it is, it’d be smart for us to try to pad out voter registration as much as possible, because part of this is a numbers game.”

Voter registration may not be the only challenge for Democrats. President Biden’s approval numbers in battleground states are also a negative factor.

US President Joe Biden speaks with reporters on the South Lawn of the White House after arriving aboard Marine One on September 26, 2021, in Washington, DC. – The Bidens are returning to the White House after spending the weekend at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland. (Photo by ALEX EDELMAN / AFP) (Photo by ALEX EDELMAN/AFP via Getty Images)

According to Civiqs polling that Breitbart News reported in September, overall, in 25 out of 27 seats in 18 battleground states, Biden’s approval rating is underwater.

In 12 out of 13 races where Republicans currently hold the seat, Biden has a negative approval rating. In seats currently held by a Democrat, 13 out of 14 seats face Biden’s underwater approval rating.

Follow Wendell Husebø on Twitter @WendellHusebø

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