Democratic presidential performance in Florida’s largest counties 2000-2016 analyzed

We’ve taken the 15 biggest counties and done a very basic analysis. Deeper-dive analysis will certainly be done by this website and others in the coming weeks and months. For this analysis we’ve eliminated all votes for third and fourth counties as well as undervotes/overvotes and just taken percentage of the overall vote. In the near future we will look at raw votes and overlay that with population growth and make deeper conclusions.

Some clear patterns are established when comparing the rise/fall from 2000 to 2016 as well as from the high-water mark in many places which was President Obama’s 2008 victory to the failed Clinton effort this past Tuesday. The chart below shows the gradual rise in Democratic performance in Miami-Dade and Orange Counties which mirror that of similar urban areas across the country. In fact, Hillary Clinton did better in both places than President Obama in terms of percentage of the vote. But the rest of the chart tells a sad story of the collapse of Democratic support in the second-tier counties whose growing margins for Republicans helps to undue the immense raw vote margins Democrats take from four counties: Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Orange.

The collapsing Democratic base in areas like Pasco, Volusia and even Brevard and Manatee make it virtually impossible for the party to win statewide elections. You can only squeeze so many votes out of the largest urban counties and the Democrats have quite possibly tapped out every potential vote in these areas. Also of concern is the drop in vote Pinellas County has experienced particularly in the last four years.

Chart below:

Gore 2000 Kerry 2004 Obama 2008 Obama 2012 Clinton 2016 00-16 08-16
Miami-Dade 53 53 58 62 65 12 7
Broward 68 65 68 67 68 0 0
Palm Beach 63 61 62 59 58 -5 -4
Hillsborough 52 46 54 53 53 1 -1
Orange 52 50 60 60 63 11 3
Duval 41 42 49 48 48 7 -1
Pinellas 52 50 54 53 49 -3 -5
Lee 41 39 45 42 39 -2 -6
Polk 45 42 47 47 43 2 -4
Brevard 44 42 45 43 39 5 -6
Volusia 54 51 53 49 43 11 -10
Pasco 51 45 48 47 39 12 -9
Seminole 44 42 49 47 49 5 0
Sarasota 47 46 50 47 44 3 -6
Manatee 46 43 47 44 40 -6 -7

One comment

  1. mike coleman · ·

    Nice Chart.

    What does it tell us?

    I’m not sure because percentages within counties measure all voters and not just Democrats.

    Democratic turnout is measured by total votes expressed as a percentage of registered,
    And, by that measure Dems got out the vote in numbers higher than ever.

    There are numerous components to GOTV and to Campaigns.
    Wins and losses are measured by who got the most votes.

    In 2016 about 950,000 more Floridians voted than in 2012.
    Florida’s population grew 3.6% and the turnout in 2016 grew 5.9% so we know that GOTV efforts and interest in this election was greater than 2012.

    Florida’s Official vote count shows 298,273 votes for Libertarians, Greens and Others in 2016.
    This total is more than 4 times the 72,976 Libertarians, Greens and Others received in 2012.

    Donald Trump’s latest vote count stands 114,455 more votes for Hillary Clinton’s.

    Let’s not blame these voters for Hillary’s loss because it came from somewhere else even though we can see a Hillary victory could have come from the Others totals.

    We all need to agree that like in every election some of Florida’s 67 counties have better or poorer turnout and every election the reasons for this differ.

    The difference usually isn’t the mechanical GOTV type of problem but rather it’s the MESSAGE that comes (or doesn’t come) from the Campaign’s themselves.

    Instead Democrats decided to saddle up with the message “Donald Trump is unfit to be Presi
    dent” and used it’s time and money loudly extolling this message everywhere, all the time.

    Campaign messaging really doesn’t come from any Party.

    Party messaging happens when there are no elections happening when the Parties go about their business of Voter Maintenance for upccoming campaigns.
    In 2016 Democrats didn’t message what their Party stands for and has stood for for decades and decades.

    With third Party vote totals as they were we have to understand both Parties leaked Votes to other Parties and their messages.

    So what did happen here in Florida (and in lots of other states)

    What stands out is this:

    (from Early Voting and Vote by Mail indicators) was a seriously large group of 60 year old plus White Non Party Affiliated Voters (NPAs) bought Trump’s “I’ll strengthen Social Security, I’ll Strengthen Medicare, I’ll make Health Insurance cheaper for everyone, and I’ll create lots of new high paying jobs for the average American.

    This group I am talking about didn’t vote in 2010, or 2012, or 2014 but they voted in 2016.
    These nearly non voters showed up and 59,255 of them (by my source) voted Early or by Mail this year.

    These icy cold Voters who hadn’t voted in years, many of them in over a decade, decided to vote.

    It isn’t hard to imagine(although there are no verifiable counts available to me at this time) that these very very infrequent voters showed up in even greater numbers on election day.
    Perhaps another 60,000 or more likely another 100,000 or more of them did.

    These voters didn’t come out of their voting slumber to vote for a third Party Candidate they came out to vote for the populist message Donald Trump had spread as he decimated the Republican Primary field from 2015 throughout the rest of the campaign.
    It’s very improbable that more than 20% of this group voted for Hillary Clinton.Perhaps as few as 10% did.

    Democrats didn’t counter Trump’s very non Republican Party message with THAT’S WHAT WE’VE BEEN SAYING FOR 30 YEARS!

    And so, Donald Trump wins 29 electoral votes from Florida, 20 From Pennsylvania, probably Michigan’s 16 and while Hillary won the popular vote Trump will live in the White House.

    Democrats turned out a record number of Dems in 2016, but we lost because we let Trump steal our message and we didn’t fight him for it by reminding Voters they were mad at Republican gridlock for holding up progress.

    Don’t blame and fight your local Democrats, join them and do something positive in the two years leading up to our Governor’s election.


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