I blogged this yesterday, but the post got lost somewhere in cyberspace. This was rightfully a much talked about story considering the importance of Ohio to both campaigns:
Voter registration in the Buckeye State is down by 490,000 people from four years ago. Of that reduction, 44 percent is in Cleveland and surrounding Cuyahoga County, where Democrats outnumber Republicans more than two to one.
“I think what we’re seeing is a lot of spin and hype on the part of the Obama campaign to try to make it appear that they’re going to cruise to victory in Ohio,” Cuyahoga County Republican Chairman Rob Frost said. “It’s not just Cuyahoga County. Nearly 350,000 of those voters are the decrease in the rolls in the three largest counties, Cuyahoga, Hamilton and Franklin.” Frost points out that those three counties all contain urban centers, where the largest Democrat vote traditionally has been.
Ohio is not alone. An August study by the left-leaning think tank Third Way showed that the Democratic voter registration decline in eight key swing states outnumbered the Republican decline by a 10-to-one ratio. In Florida, Democratic registration is down 4.9 percent, in Iowa down 9.5 percent. And in New Hampshire, it’s down down 19.7 percent. The Third Way study, which was conducted in August, indicates the Democrats’ drop in registered voters coincides with a gain in independent voters.”There are about half a million more independents now than there were just for years ago,” Diggles said.
The Romney campaign has made over 3,000,000 voter contacts in Ohio and has been aggressive in voter registration efforts throughout the election cycle. This has kept their registration numbers up while Democrats hemorrhage voters.
The party breakdown is difficult because Ohio does not register voters by party so the geography mentioned in the article is hugely important and the basis for much of the GOP confidence in these changes.