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Independents see voter gains; Democrats’ share shrinks

The state’s latest voter rolls paint a worrisome picture for Democrats this November.

Arizona added nearly 159,000 new voters since the general election two years ago, pushing the electoral population to more than 3.1 million.

But the number of Democrats shrank by almost 20,000.

Nearly all of the growth occurred among voters who chose to register as independents.

Meanwhile, Republicans registered modest gains, adding more than 13,000 new voters to their ranks. Most of that growth occurred since July, indicating that momentum and enthusiasm are on the side of Republicans.

Democrats now make up about 32 percent of the voting population compared to 34 percent two years ago.

Republicans share of the voting pie also shrunk to 36 percent from 37 percent.

In contrast, voters who chose not belong to any party, or independents, now make up 31 percent, up from 28 percent two years ago.

Among the new voters, almost a third decided to register after the last reporting period this July. In fact, the two major parties gained voters during this period.

Republicans added more than 13,000 new voters while Democrats added about 1,700 new voters. Independents grew by nearly 29,000.

According to the Secretary of State’s Office, all counties except Navajo reported increases in their voting population since July. The largest registration spikes happened in Maricopa County, which gained 24,593 new voters, and Pima County, which added 8,738.

Total voters: 3,146,418, gained 158,967
Democrats: 1,002,937, lost 19,315
Greens: 4,820, gained 811
Independents: 982,477, gained 158,027
Libertarians: 24,382, gained 6,229
Republicans: 1,131,802, gained 13,215
*Current net gains or losses are compared to 2008 general election figures

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