Monday, January 28, 2013

Cheshire election history (1974 - 2011): Party affiliation

I'm guessing that this trend line is imperfect. The dip in unaffiliated voters around 1987 is probably too big. But as I've said, while this data is a fair representation of the election trends over the past few decades, it's also imperfect. Anyway, the large margin of registered Rs over registered Ds is correct for thirty years ago. And that voter registration margin did shrink until around 2006 when the Dems pulled even with the GOP in registration and soon pulled ahead.

I looked at graphing the four Council districts, as well as the seven precincts, but have decided against publishing them. They just don't make much sense because the year-on-year data is inconsistent. And that became evident in several ways, including the decennial redistricting.

So you should be able to see my source data (by year, by precinct) by clicking here, but I'm not convinced that you'll see anything particularly interesting in the trends. Also, the date of measurement was inconsistent from year to year.  The date of measurement for most years happened in January, but that's not the case for every year.

One note of interest for me is a story I heard back in early 2006. As then-state Senator Chris Murphy was looking build his campaign warchest, he went to Rahm Emanuel and asked for funding. When The Godfather asked for evidence that then-Congressman Nancy Johnson was beatable and the CT-5 was winnable, Murphy used Cheshire as the prime example of how the CT-5 was trending Democratic. Based on this trend, it appears Chris Murphy was correct.

Also, the election records for party affiliation happen to date back to 1974, not 1979.  So we have a bit more data for this trend.  And going back to 1974 was of interest to me.  It was the most recent year in which I found a precinct in which the plurality of voters was affiliated with a major party.  In the 6th District in 1974, there were 279 Rs, 276 Us and 123 Ds.  Since then, I believe unaffiliated voters have represented either a plurality or majority of the voters in every precinct.

Tim White

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