Tagbrew post

Analyzing demographics of the Pivot Counties with highest, lowest turnout in 2020

Two-hundred and six Pivot Counties voted for Barack Obama (D) in 2008 and 2012 and Donald Trump (R) in 2016. In the 2020 presidential election, 181 Retained Pivot Counties voted for Trump again, and 25 Boomerang Pivot Counties voted for Joe Biden (D).

Demographically, Retained Pivot Counties tended to be less populous, with an average population of 62,890 compared to 186,852 for Boomerang Pivot Counties. Retained Pivot Counties also tended to have lower median home values and lower rates of educational attainment when compared to the average Boomerang Pivot County. Both Retained and Boomerang Pivot Counties tended to have a higher-than-average non-Hispanic white population compared to the nationwide percentage.

What does demographic data reveal about Pivot Counties with the highest and lowest rates of voter turnout in 2020?

Of the ten Pivot Counties with the highest voter turnout rates in 2020, eight were Retained Pivot Counties and two were Boomerang Pivot Counties. Turnout rates increased in all of these counties between 2016 and 2020.

Based on 2019 U.S. Census estimates, the ten pivot counties with the highest voter turnout rates in 2020 have a larger percentage white population than the average Pivot County (89.7% versus 85.0%). They also had higher median home values ($220,530 versus $134,148) and higher rates of bachelor degree attainment (24.9% versus 21.0%).

Of the ten Pivot Counties that had the lowest voter turnout in 2020, nine were Retained Pivot Counties and one was a Boomerang Pivot County. Two of these counties—Woodruff and Benson—were the only two Pivot Counties where turnout rates decreased from 2016.

These counties have larger percentage American Indian or Alaska Native populations than the average Pivot County (24.8% versus 3.9%). Three—Benson, Ziebach, and Corson—are located entirely or partly on an Indian reservation. The ten Pivot Counties with the lowest voter turnout rates also had larger percentage Black or African American populations (15.7% versus 7.9%), lower median home values ($81,110 versus $134,148), and higher percentages of persons living in poverty (24.7% versus 14.3%).

Nationwide, the voter turnout rate in the 2020 presidential election was 69.3%, the highest since 1900. Retained Pivot Counties had a total turnout of 67.8%, 1.5 points below the nationwide rate, and Boomerang Pivot Counties had a total turnout of 71.6%, 2.3 points above. Ballotpedia uses voting-age population estimates provided by the U.S. Census to calculate turnout.

For more information about turnout in Retained and Boomerang Pivot Counties, click here.

For more information about the demographics of these counties, click here.



19 states saw at least one party with a net gain of seats in both state legislative chambers

Following the Nov. 3, 2020, elections, there were 19 states where either Democrats, Republicans, or both had a net gain of seats in both the state House and Senate.

Democrats had a net gain in both chambers of six states, seeing their largest net gains in Connecticut, where Democrats picked up a net of six seats in the state House and two in the state Senate. The smallest net gains for Democrats were in Massachusetts and Missouri, with a net gain of three seats across both chambers in each state.

Republicans had a net gain in both chambers of 15 states with their largest in New Hampshire where they gained a net 57 seats in the state House and four in the Senate. Aside from Alaska, where control of the state House had yet to be determined as of Jan. 26, New Hampshire was the only state where control of a legislative chamber changed in the 2020 elections. Both the House and Senate flipped from Democratic to Republican control. The smallest net gains for Republicans were in Missouri and Oregon, with a net gain of one seat in both the House and Senate of each state.

Both Democrats and Republicans had net gains in Missouri and Vermont due to flipping seats that were either previously held by third party legislators or winning seats that were vacant at the time of the election.

The map below shows those states where one party had net gains in both state legislative chambers shaded red, blue, or purple to indicate party gains.

The table below lists these states and the net gains made by each party in both state legislative chambers. Democratic gains are shown on the left. Republican gains are shown on the right.

Across all chambers that held regular state legislative elections in 2020, Democrats had a net loss of 114 seats, Republicans had a net gain of 175, and third parties had a net loss of 14.

To learn more about these chambers and the number of legislators by party following the 2020 election, click here.



Share of incumbents defeated in contested primaries grows for third even-year cycle in a row

Ballotpedia’s annual state legislative competitiveness study shows that for the third even-year election cycle in a row, the share of incumbents defeated in contested primaries has grown. In the 44 states that held state legislative elections this year, 153 incumbents—61 Democrats and 93 Republicans—were defeated by primary challengers.

Overall, 15.2% of the 1,016 major-party incumbents who faced primary challengers in 2020 lost, the third consecutive increase compared to 2018 (13.8%) and 2016 (12.3%). The loss rate in 2020 also exceeded that of 13.0% in 2014.

Highlights:

  1. 18% of Republicans who faced challenges in 2020 were defeated—the highest since at least 2014.
  2. 12% of Democrats who faced challenges were defeated, lower than the 14% rate in 2018.
  3. More Democrats were defeated in states with Democratic trifectas, as was the case for Republicans in Republican trifectas.
  4. The loss rate for incumbents in states with divided governments exceeds the national average altogether and by party.
  5. Democratic incumbents were defeated at the highest rate in states with Democratic trifectas and at the lowest in those with Republican trifectas. In states with divided governments, the rate exceeded the national average for Democrats.
  6. Republican incumbents facing contested primaries were more likely to be defeated in states with divided governments than in states with trifectas.

To read more about the state legislative incumbents defeated in primaries this year, click here: https://ballotpedia.org/Incuhttps://www.pexels.com/photo/stickers-with-i-voted-inscription-and-flag-of-usa-1550339/mbents_defeated_in_2020%27s_state_legislative_elections