Voter Registration Up In June Among Democratic, Independent Voters; Republican Registrations Flat

( Voter registrations were back on the rise in June after falling considerably during the spring as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

A new analysis conducted by a Democratic political data firm, TargetSmart, found a huge increase in new voter registration among unaffiliated voters and Democratic voters during June. The firm said these happened as Black Lives Matter protests were being held all across the country in the wake of the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers.

In an analysis, TargetSmart said:

“Despite a full or partial lockdown in large swaths of the country for much of the month, voter registration began to rebound as people took to the streets to protest.”

In just the first part of June, there were 1.1 million voters who registered. In June of 2016, there were 1.5 million registrants for the entire month. Only partial data is available for June of this year, as not all states have reported complete data yet.

This surge in registrations reportedly came from areas where protests were strong. This included in cities such as Los Angeles, Minneapolis and even Kalamazoo, Michigan.

In the report, TargetSmart wrote:

“Voter registration for Democrats nearly doubled in June from 17,000 in 2016 to 32,000 in 2020. Meanwhile, Republican registration essentially flat-lined at 17,000.”

Voter registrations typically increase significantly in the spring of a presidential election year. This coincides with big pushes by each political party to register new voters in hopes of getting new voters on their side come November’s General Election.

This year was quite different, however, as the coronavirus pandemic kept people in their homes and away from some of the typical places where voter registration happens — such as when people renew their driver’s licenses.

Compared to 2016, voter registration decreased 32% in March and April. In May, registrations of voters dropped a whopping 54 percent when compared to numbers from 2016.

Again, most of these voter registrations don’t happen online. They happen outside the home, with 52% of voters registering on school campuses, during registration drives, at hospitals or at government offices such as the Department of Motor Vehicles.

But because of the coronavirus pandemic and the related stay-at-home orders, these typical registration drives just didn’t happen.

Once those restrictions were lifted in late May and June, the push to register new voters started up again. In addition, the mass protests against police brutality across the country gave many registration groups — especially those focused on Democratic voters — an avenue through which they could reach potential new registrants.

The CEO of TargetSmart, Tom Bonier, also said he believes people are growing frustrated with how President Donald Trump is handling the coronavirus pandemic. That, he said, has led to more people registering to vote.

“There’s this level of intensity, people are feeling like this situation is being very much mishandled, and if they have the opportunity to go and cast a ballot and put different people in charge,” he said. “I think we’re seeing that in the vote registrations.”