Photos: Colorado Democrats push early vote (for Obama) on heels of high registration numbers

Colorado Votes Early thumb.jpg
Big photos below.
Today is the first day that voters can cast their ballots in person as part of early voting in Colorado -- and the state's top Democratic officials set an example by voting in front of a bunch of cameras in Denver. The photo op underscores how important the ground game is for Obama in key swing states and how the Democrats, on the heels of national polls showing the presidential race tied among likely voters, must turn registrations into votes.

Earlier this month, Secretary of State Scott Gessler announced record-breaking results of registration this season, which he attributed in part to his expensive ad campaign across the state encouraging people to sign up to vote.

Casting ballots 2.JPG
Sam Levin
Mayor Michael Hancock, Senator Michael Bennet, Representative Diana DeGette, and Governor John Hickenlooper casting their ballots.
But Gessler, a Republican, has continued to face criticisms that he is too focused on preventing fraud and intimidating voters along the way -- especially ones who won't be supporting Mitt Romney. Part of his response is that his office has helped register an unprecedented number of voters -- and in the final weeks before the deadline, more Democrats than Republicans.

Numbers sent to us last week from Gessler's office show that Democrats have outpaced Republicans in terms of new residents signing up to vote -- a fact that highlights just how important it is for the Obama campaign to get those supporters to vote in the coming weeks.

As we noted in our August feature on why Colorado is such an important battleground state, the largest chunk of registered voters fall in the "unaffiliated" category. But overall there is a pretty even split between Democrats, Republicans and the unaffiliated voters.

While the unaffiliated group still has the largest number of voters, followed by the Republicans, than the Democrats, the net growth in registrations over the last month has clearly favored Obama supporters.

Here's a chart sent to us from Gessler's office, outlining the changes since September.

Registration data, Gessler's office.jpg
Courtesy of Rich Coolidge, Secretary of State's office.
From September 1 to October 9, a total of 21,307 residents newly registered as Republicans, while registrations for Democrats reached 39,497 -- about 18,000 more than GOP voters over that time period. Still, the 52,875 grand total of new unaffiliated registered voters is almost as high as the two parties combined, making it clear that category is still going to be crucial come election day.

The chart also shows that at each step of the way, Democrats continued to register more voters than Republicans. For example, from September 15 to October 1, the Secretary of State's office only logged 8,524 new Republican voters -- about half of what the Democrats logged during that time, with a net jump of 17,611 new voters.

Continue for commentary from the state's top Democratic officials and more photos of the Denver Elections Division.



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2 comments
Kevins_Mom
Kevins_Mom

I'd rather vote for a socialist Kenyan without a birth certificate than a multimillionaire Mormon republican.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

 @Kevins_Mom Me too, although only the latter is one of the candidates.  If a committed, moderate, scientifically-literate, technology-oriented socialist were to run, I would jump at the chance to vote for him or her.  You suggest that the race is between the candidates of the Greater and the Lesser Fascist Parties, and I agree, but if our elections are about choosing between which of two such shall govern us, we might as well save the expense.  To vote over and over again for the lesser of two evils is to ensure that our country sinks further and further into poverty and fascist demagoguery.

 

As it happens, Colorado reportedly has the greatest number of Presidential tickets on the ballot of any state, and there are four explicitly socialist ones, as well as the Justice Party, Peace and Freedom Party, and the Greens.  Unfortunately, none directly acknowledge the potential of nuclear technology (specifically thorium fluoride molten salt reactors) to provide safe, cheap, abundant, and carbon-neutral electricity, and some apparently oppose any nuclear technology, past or future.  I voted for James Harris for President and Alyson Kennedy for Vice-President; at least the Socialist Workers Party has a plank about not denying access to such technologies to the developing world.

 

There will be a large third-party vote, but of course it will be scattered among many poorly distinguished parties most of which are on the ballot in only some states.  The United States needs a parliamentary system, but what we are stuck with is the Presidency.  We should work to remove all the corrupt statutory apparatus the Greater and Lesser Fascist Parties have put in place to discriminate against all others.

 

We need parties that represent the interests of poor and working Americans, and more than that, we need intelligent, visionary leaders who will bring us together to work for the commonweal and for our future prosperity.  As a first principle, such a person needs to believe that our communal effort should be directed to such goals, which certainly rules out the two fascist parties that hold power.  We still have the intellectual and technological capacity to make our economy and society prosper broadly, and if our government were truly driven by science, we would never have begun our decline.

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