Report: Few Voters Will Cast Ballots in San Diego Mayoral Special Election
Absentee Voters, Republican Voters Will Play Larger Role in Mayoral Race
SAN DIEGO – Less than half of all registered voters are expected to cast ballots in the San Diego mayoral special election scheduled for November 19th. That is the conclusion of a new report authored by the National University System Institute for Policy Research (NUSIPR), a regional economic think-tank.
Following the resignation of Bob Filner, the San Diego City Council approved a November 19th special election to fill the vacancy in the Mayor’s Office. Using GIS software and data from the San Diego County Registrar of Voters and the United States Census Bureau, NUSIPR analyzed voting behavior and turnout patterns from prior citywide elections. Today, 19 days before voting begins in the mayoral election, NUSIPR has released its findings.
We forecast that:
- Significantly fewer voters will cast ballots. Based on voting patterns and prior election history, less than half (46%) of all registered voters in San Diego are expected to cast ballots in the mayoral race.
- Most votes will be cast absentee. NUSIPR forecasts that more than 65% of votes will be cast absentee.
- The “Filner voter coalition” will not be a driving force in November. Latinos and young voters, which strongly supported Filner’s candidacy last November, are unlikely to participate in high numbers this year. However, LGBT voter precincts will generate high turnout rates.
- The special election will favor the GOP candidate. While Democratic voters outnumber Republicans history has shown that Republican voter turnout remains high across primaries and special elections while Democratic voters are much less likely to participate.
“With the Filner voter coalition unlikely to make a large impact on the race, this will be a competitive election,” remarked Vince Vasquez, author of the report. “New voter coalitions and campaign strategies will have to be developed to win the support of an electorate that is increasingly voting earlier in the election calendar.”
The complete copy of the report can be found here.
About the National University System Institute for Policy Research
The National University System Institute for Policy Research (NUSIPR) is a non-partisan, non-profit organization that formulates and promotes high quality economic policy, and public opinion research so as to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of local governments in San Diego County and to improve the quality of life enjoyed by the region’s residents.
NUSIPR publishes regular independent research and analysis for the public on a range of topics, including unemployment, business growth, and the San Diego housing market. The Institute also works collaboratively with clients to develop high quality research products that are tailored to their policy needs.