The Shrinking Democrats of Bristol County [OPINION]
Since the election of Donald J. Trump to the Presidency of the United States, the Democrats have lost thousands of members in Bristol County Massachusetts.
According to the Elections Division of the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, more than 10,000 registered Democrats are gone from the registered voting population of Bristol County. The available election data from the office of Secretary of State William Galvin is enormous and a credit to him and people he has hired to work for him.
I like to look at election statics. Wait, I'm lying. I love to look at election statics. I also love to look at particular statics and compare them to past statics and contemplate the differences. I do it so you don't have to.
I was looking at voter information for the Democratic presidential primaries in Bristol County over the years and looking for trends. During the course of my inquiry, I noticed that there were more than 10,000 Democrats registered in November of 2016 than there were in February of 2019. Specifically, there were 118,802 registered Democrats in 2016 and 108,148 registered Democrats in 2019, for a loss of 10,654 registered Democrats.
There is only a loss of about 60 voters registered as members of the Republican Party at the same time according to the data. There is an increase of 3,354 unenrolled voters. During this period of time, Bristol County has voted to re-elected Republicans such as Governor Charlie Baker and Sheriff Tom Hodgson.
The biggest change, other than the loss of Democrats, is a loss of 6,530 overall registered voters in Bristol County during this time period.
The city of Fall River lost the most Democrats compared to the other 19 cities and towns of the county. There are close to 4,000 less registered Democrats in Fall River, with New Bedford in second place with a loss of nearly 1,500 and Taunton in third place with a little over 1,100 lost Democrats.
The town of Raynham is the only community to gain Democrats, according to the data. The change was small, almost 50 more Democrats, but worth noting as it bucks the trend. The towns of Dighton, Mansfield, and Seekonk lost only a handful of Democrats in this time period – less than 60 combined.
The town of Dartmouth lost over 700 Democrats and there are over 500 fewer Democrats registered in Somerset, according to Secretary of State Galvin's data.
As of February of 2019, Bristol County still had about three Democrats for every single Republican on the voting rolls. Importantly, more than 57 percent of registered voters refuse to join any political party.
It remains to be seen how this shift in party affiliation will impact the 2020 election, but the trend favors the re-election of President Trump.
Chris McCarthy is the host of The Chris McCarthy Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @Chris_topher_Mc. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.