NPAs Overtake Republicans in Broward Registration; Statewide Trends Favoring Democrats

Broward County is already considered the most Democratic friendly metropolitan county in Florida. The state’s second most populous county has consistently performed well for Democrats since the late 1980s. The irony is that Broward, after Pinellas and Orange Counties was probably the most Republican large county in the state between the post New Deal era (1944 election) and the mid 1980s.

According to the Broward Supervisor of Elections Office NPAs have overtaken Republicans in voter registration. The following statistics are as of July 16th.

Democrat       569,852    51.92%
NPA                  258,855    23.58%
Republican    256,204    23.34%

In neighboring Palm Beach County NPAs are poised to overtake Republicans in the near future. The current registration breakdown in Palm Beach can be found below.

Democrat: 374,068   44.5%

Republican: 243,345  28.9%

NPA: 223,765    26.7%

Like Broward, Palm Beach was part of the “Republican Horseshoe” until the mid 1980s, an area that allowed the GOP to compete with the Democrats statewide. At the time the base of the Democratic Party in Florida was the Panhandle/Big Bend between the Apalachicola and Suwanee Rivers as well as (Miami) Dade County.

Demographic changes throughout the state have changed the landscape substantially since the late 1970s. Orange County, the buckle on the Republican horseshoe did not support a single Democratic Presidential candidate between 1944 and 1996. When Al Gore carried the county in 2000 it ushered in a trend that has continued since: Barack Obama won Orange by nearly 20 percentage points in 2008.

Pinellas County was traditionally the most Republican metropolitan county in the state, and has not elected a resident Democratic Congressman since the 1940s. Yet Pinellas last gave a Republican Presidential candidate a county-wide majority in 1988 and  this year for the first time since the 1960s has a more registered Democrats than Republicans countywide.

Yet, because the Panhandle and Miami-Dade County have become more difficult terrain for Democrats since the 1980s, and much of the institutional leadership of the party hail from those areas, we hear of Democratic decline statewide. This fatalism is simply an excuse for those who don’t want to work hard and engage new voters. Florida was a southern state as late 1972 when George Wallace routed the field in the Democratic Primary. But today it is a microcosm of the country demographically and based on party ID. But unlike the nation as a whole where elections are competitive, the Democrats in Florida have applied 1970s / 1980s logic and defeatism to explain why this state has the worst record of electing  Democrats to cabinet office this millennium than any state east of the Mississippi.

Long term demographic trends favor Florida becoming solidly Democratic over time.  But our leadership at both the county and statewide level seem unaware of the changes and unprepared to take advantage of them.

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6 thoughts on “NPAs Overtake Republicans in Broward Registration; Statewide Trends Favoring Democrats

  1. 23% and 29% for GOP registration. Many of the NPAs are former Republicans in both counties and D registration has stayed generally in the same place in both counties for ten years. Yet Democratic performance has not improved. All the more reason Siegel and Caeser both must go.

  2. New registrants in Sarasota and Manatee are more Democratic than Republican believe it or not.

  3. So the party now can make more excuses to not run hard up here and spend all the time and money in southern and central Florida.

    That sux!

  4. This is great news but the reality is that party performance in top of the ticket races has not changed much in the county since 1996. Ironically that is the year Mitch Caeser became county chair.

    As someone said above many NPAs are formed Republicans. Their is no reason why we should not get 70% of the vote every cycle for every decent Democrat in the county. Getting 65-67% shows the dysfunctional nature of the local party and undercuts our ability to win statewide.

    Caeser’s ineptness is part of the reason why we keep losing statewide. Yet I haven’t seen a column about that here, just all the blame on the FDP. Sure, they need to shoulder a lot of the blame, but the Broward DEC just as guilty/responsible.

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