Who’s won the lion’s share of Pennsylvania’s newly registered Dems?
Since New Year’s Day 218,000 residents of Pennsylvania have filled in forms like the one reproduced above so that they will be eligible to vote in the crucial primary that takes place there on April 22nd.
More than 120,000 of them are new voters while a further 86,000 others were existing voters who filled in Question 9 to register as Democrats. In addition 12,000 switched to become registered Republicans. All this is the product of massive organisational operations by the two camps in the state. Getting people to fill in complex forms is not easy.
The mechanics of this election are crucial because unlike in many other states only those who are registered with a particular party are entitled to vote in the primary and to do so your form had to be in by yesterday.
So the big cross-overs from independents and Republicans that we have seen elsewhere, often on the day itself, had to have happened in PA by the deadline. This, of course, has been one of the areas where Barack Obama has had particular success and why the April 22nd primary is so challenging. The kind of flexibility between the parties that he has benefited from in other states simply does not exist.
According to the New York Times “…Some of the biggest numbers of those who switched to become Democrats were recorded in the Republican suburbs of Philadelphia, which are likely to be an important battleground in the primary. Analysts say suburbanites who registered Democratic are probably either opponents of the war in Iraq who want to vote for Senator Barack Obama or professional women who want to support Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.”
Who knows what the outcome will be though the state’s demographics favour Hillary. One good pointer for the Democrats for November’s general election is that a total of 4,044,952 people are now registered Democrats against a total of 3,215,478 who are registered as Republicans.
In the nomination betting the Hillary price has eased over the weekend and now stands at 3.5/1.