Archive for February, 2008

Was it a super-sized event?

February 7, 2008

Nationwide, Democrats have been coming out in force during this primary election season. It was interesting to see that Democrats seemed to be following that same trend in Unicoi County.

In early voting alone this year, nearly three times as many Democrats cast ballots as they did in 2004. According to the Unicoi County Election Commisson, Democrats accounted for only 132 votes cast in early voting, compared to this year when 362 citizens opted to participate in the Democratic primary.

As for Republicans, there was a decrease from those taking advantage of early voting four years ago. In 2004, 998 Republicans cast ballots in early voting compared to only 889 in 2008.

I love disecting politics, so I wondered if Unicoi County was following a nation trend in getting Democrats to the polls or if it’s just because Tennessee had moved up its primary to be with the other 24 states participating in “Super Tuesday.” But it doesn’t seem to be a super-size issue.

In 2004, Tennessee’s primary election was the second week in February instead of the first week, as in 2008.

Also four years ago, there was a “mini-Super Tuesday” the week before the Tennessee election, and “Super Tuesday” wasn’t even until March, so it’s not like the election was decided before Tennesseans went to cast ballots and, thus, making people not interested in voting.

So why did more Democrats vote in 2008 in Unicoi County than in 2004? I guess it’s what folks are seeing all over the country — that is, people seem to be very engaged in the candidacies of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Certainly Clinton and Obama seem far more interesting and engaging than John Kerry, the eventual nominee for the Democrats in 2004.