February 6th, 2008
01:00 AM ET
8 years ago

Democrats shatter turnout primary season records

Democrats caucus in Colorado on a record-breaking Election Day.

Democrats caucus in Colorado on a record-breaking Election Day.

(CNN) - Though the fate of the Democratic race to the nomination remains uncertain, one thing is for sure: voters are turning out for the Democratic primaries in number that absolutely shatter previous records - which may be a troubling sign for Republicans looking ahead to the general election.

CNN looked at six states: Illinois, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Missouri, and Arizona. Even with the votes not fully tallied yet, the turnout numbers are still substantially higher than in the past. Arizona already has nearly 80,000 more voters than it ever had before, with only 67% of the precincts counted.

The Republicans are also experiencing higher turnout in some places, though not nearly on par with the Democrats. For the same states, the numbers are far less dramatic (except in New Jersey, where both parties experienced significant jumps), and are lower in some cases.

–CNN Political Producer Alan Isenberg

(Full results after the jump)

Turnout for Democratic contests, rounded to the nearest thousand:



VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 778,000 (98% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 1,809,000 (91% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 1,744,000 (99% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 1,104,000 (99% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 1,170,000 (98% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 314,000 (67% reporting)


Turnout for Republican contests, rounded to the nearest thousand:



VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 576,000 (98% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 825,000 (93% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 604,000 (99% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 551,000 (98% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 462,000 (95% reporting)




VOTES TONIGHT SO FAR: 398,000 (67% reporting)


Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. MD

    These numbers are nothing short of historic. An electorate that is FED UP with an administration that has ignored the people for 7 years and has all but destroyed our pride and reputation. Don't underestimate the corporate owned media spin effect. Remember that Republicans would LOVE to see Clinton win the nomination as they are scared TO DEATH of Obama! Watch for this bias/spin in the media...

    February 6, 2008 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  2. Rose

    I think whom ever the Democrats nominee is, they can beat the Republican. The country wants change and change is no more of the pro war Republicans. Change is so important, this process started so early on because the Country just wants to have an end in sight. Democrats are united and strong.

    February 6, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  3. al75

    I'm troubled by reports, including today's NYT editorial, promoting the idea that the Democratic party is deeply divided. This isn't true for me. For once there is an actual ELECTION going on, as opposed to the machine-tooled coronations we're used to. While Obama (my choice) and Clinton are roughly similar in many policy issues, they differ deeply on some, and more deeply in the kind of political forces they represent.

    This is a good thing. The democrats fielded 3 candidates I would be happy to vote for. This has never happened in my adult life (I'm 48).

    The fact that Dems are turning out in record numbers might, just might, have something to do with the fact we have something to vote FOR.

    February 6, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  4. O

    You are what's wrong with politcs and this country. You just insulted 50% of the people of this country (Republicans) with your Hard-Line agenda and views. Most people stand in the middle and partially base their vote on the previous administration. You clearly demonstrated that you vote Democrat regardless of who's on the ticket. We all hope that you at least make an informed decision and simply don't hate your Republican parents.

    I agree with Christopher that the true winners are the American people. Democrats have finally realized that they can't just sit and watch and hope their candidate wins, they need to go out and vote. But the true test will be in November when 50% of the Democrats won't have the candidate they voted for in the primaries as the presidential candidate. In November we'll see if people remain active or if they lost interest when their presidential hopeful lost the nomination. The Republicans would greatly benefit since they have always demonstrated strong party unity.

    February 6, 2008 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  5. GaVoter

    Hugh turnout?? There were only 2 other people at my polling station. Obama took it easy..

    February 6, 2008 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  6. democratICnproud

    I continue to be amazed at both the MSM and cables channels (not much news there). In an almost orchestrated manner HRC is belittled, slighted and maligned without justification while Mr. Obama is uplifted and heralded as the savior of our country. I truly like and admire Mr. Obama BUT fair is fair. The stubborn fact is he did NOT vote against the initial resolution (words from afar are much easier than those stated while in the fire) and he did NOT vote against the Iran resolution when there was no reason to avoid it ! Yet those are the foundation of his somewhat arrogant claim that he would be RIGHT from day one, impying that he would continue to be RIGHT going forward. I guess that implies that he would actually SHOW UP and be COUNTED when we needed him. Chis Matthews, Howard Fineman, Wolf and yes even the "special commentator" Olbermann have made their decision to annoint Mr. Obama. Please, people, how about YOU REPORT and WE will decide.

    February 6, 2008 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  7. GSD

    If the Democrats turn out in November in similar numbers, the GOP will be destroyed electorally.

    This could be a political realignment like 1932 and the GOP will be on the severely losing side.

    Rush Limbaugh, the most listened GOP pundit said that a John McCain candidacy will destroy the GOP. He's right, it's happening already.


    February 6, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  8. Jane

    Barack definitely has the charisma and has charmed me. His speeches really move me. He doesn't have to look down ONCE! But at the end of the day I'm not looking for the person I like the most, I'm looking for someone that can get things done. He has done good things but not enough that make me comfortable he can get down to the nitty gritty. You can be "right" (correct) from the start but over the course of time you WILL be wrong. So that isn't a selling factor to me. A lot of presidents have got things wrong but were able to turn around.

    Hillary may not be able to "unite" the country but if you take away the surface, she can get things done. Yes, there is a LOT of baggage. And the likability factor is nowhere near Obama. And why not choose Obama when he is nice and shiny? Because how do you know nice and shiny can remain shiny through the nitty gritty? I don't. I don't want all these "changes" made when I'm not sure if they can really be done! I want changes made I know that may not be as bold but CAN be changed. I need someone who knows what it takes because they have been involved for so long. So although nice and shiny is appealing, I cannot vote for him.

    Go Hillary!

    February 6, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  9. retired

    I live in Ohio and my husband and I have already made up our mind who we are voting for March 4th. It will be Obama. I truly believe he will be the next president. I sure feel sorry for him the mess he is getting because of the last 8 years.

    February 6, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  10. Mary G Cordero

    I am originally from California, and have now lived in Arizona for one year, and I am so very happy that both states went to Hillary.

    Hillary keep on, keeping on.

    Let Obama have it in the next debate.

    February 6, 2008 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  11. Bryan

    I think we all know who the front runner is and for everyone that is not sure let me remind everyone her name is "Hillary Clinton" ........... and she will be the next President of the United States!!!!!!!!!

    February 6, 2008 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  12. Jeff in GA

    I added up the number of votes received in the democratic primaries last night:

    Obama 7,238,726

    Clinton 7,096,197

    February 6, 2008 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  13. Chi

    As an african american mom of 2 in my 30's, I'm so very proud of our dem candidates, it clearly shows that this country is yawning for real change. Change that will no doubt benefit this generation and the next. On the subject of issue and who can most deliver on these campaign promises, I'm with Clinton as she has demonstrated record of change in her work with disabled children, public school education improvement, procuring child healthcare, upholding veterans benefits etc. Obama is a wonderful candidate as well, as my hubby would say, but I believe that America needs someone of higher experience to deal with the crisis of the economy, healthcare, better education for all our children, (pre-K-college), etc. On foreign matter, Obama has the upper hand in that he has always been against the war, but the reality is that we are there now and the majority of the American people want out of there, so both candidates are on the same page moving forward. To this end, what we need to truly unify our party in Nov is a Clinton-Obama ticket. This will bring all the demographics together and propel us forward to face the challenges of the 21st century. And afterwards, Obama, can take the white house for another 8 yrs.

    February 6, 2008 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  14. Christopher

    Have you heard "it's the economy stupid?" no it's not and it's not the war, and it's not the Republicans, and it's not the Democrats.

    It's you and me!
    American Democracy works best when the people are involved- it works better still when they are involved for the good of the nation and not the good of themselves or a particular party.

    Compromise was the key in the creation of the Constitution and the ratification.
    We the People...In Order to form a more Perfect Union is the principle that has been missing for the last 20 years.

    The people looking for that more perfect union must guide the voters to choose wisely the candidate that can most effectively acheive this goal

    February 6, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  15. Dee

    Ever since Bill came down on Jessica Yelsin (or whatever her name is), CNN has been anti Hillary. I love Cnn and have watched it for years but I see them trying to cause friction between the Democratic leaders. Jessica asked an irrelevant non-political question and Bill told her there was no room for those kinds of questions in this election.

    I love Cnn and have watched it for years but I see them trying to bring down Hillary.

    Also, get rid of Carl Bernstein. He should be graciously staying away from politics as is his friend Bob Woodward. Carl is the typical Republican that thinks he knows everything. I'd never read his book on Hillary because it was not approved by Hillary. Carl's out of his element. If Bob is working for one of the other networks, I'm sure he is much more eloquent than dowdy Carl.

    He talked about the two Democrats hating each other. Well, duh??

    I don't think they hate each other. They're too much alike. But, CNN and Bernstein will bring up every little remark by either Clinton or OBama and will make a negative read of it.

    Wake up, CNN. Smell the roses and the wonderful change coming to politics!!!

    February 6, 2008 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  16. Retired Soldier

    My opinion...Isn't it refreshing to have two candidates with the good sense to imediately start setting themselves up to run against the republicans while in a tight fight for the Democratic nomination. I know the media wants confrontation, so I would ask the media to do is their job, cover them and give them TV time, even if they are not being stupid and nasty. Let them talk about issues, let them introduce new and REAL issues like patent law reforms, election reforms, right up there with stem cell research, womens rights, the unconstitutionality of the patriot act... see my point?
    These are fun issues! Start reading up Solidad, this election could give you the opportunity to show some real intellect as well as be cute:) What a wonderful experience for the AMERICAN PEOPLE!

    To the producers, it is time to tell some powerful folks that your Journalists require some freedom to look into real issues again. It is YOUR job to define and investigate issues. Has it ever been more important?

    Hey, thanks fro letting me have my say in a public forum!

    February 6, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  17. kchap in DC

    response to WMW:

    "illegals" can't vote.
    "disgruntled Repubs!" that may be voting democrat still means a larger chance of getting a dem in office

    response to Here in the UK:

    you give too much credit to the GOP followers. if their intelligence level was such that they voted for our current president, it would be ubsurd to think that large numbers of them thought to vote for a candidate in the primary that would be easier for their party to beat in the general. especially when all obama is doing is gaining momentum.

    everyone else:

    the statistics and your comments also give me much hope. the bottom line is whether democrat, republican, or independent, previously dormant voters are participating and an increasing number of people are either digging their heels in their place on the left or moving to the left because they want a change.

    February 6, 2008 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  18. laura cardinal

    I worked one southern Arizona poll yesterday. We had huge lines all day, and lots of first time voters. We also had a lot of independents who desperately wanted to vote, but who could not. I wish the Arizona legislature would extend the right to vote in the presidential preference election to the 30% of Arizona's voters who are registered independents or no party preference.

    February 6, 2008 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  19. Janel, St. Paul, MN

    It was so thrilling to participate in my caucus last evening. The crowd was overwhelming in its enthusiasm and desire to stand in long lines to cast a vote.

    That Obama won the vast majority of votes of Minnesotans made the night even sweeter.

    Go Obama!!

    February 6, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  20. Jeremy

    I think you are making a mistake in projecting voter turnout at the primaries to the general election in November.

    The poor Republican turnout only reflects dissatisfaction with the choice of candidates, not dissatisfaction with conservative values. Conservatives will turn out in droves to keep Hillary out of the White House. Obama could be a president we merely disagree with, but still respect. Hillary, not so much.

    If you want a Dem blowout in November, pick Obama, if you want a real fight, and to see the conservative line in the sand, by all means, pick another Clinton.

    February 6, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  21. desagree

    Hillary is going home no question about it. OBAMA IS THE MEN, mark my words.

    Go Obama 2008!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 6, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  22. Chris, Middletown, CT

    Happy to say in my sons school...they voted...and Hillary...did NOT win...it was Obama by a landslide....prove positive that literacy programs are working....and they will not support Hillary....as her ONLY consistent position is that she is a woman

    February 6, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  23. hotpursuit

    Won't matter. Most of these are solid blue states...a higher popular vote won't change the electoral college.

    February 6, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  24. MATHEW

    yes it is great for democracey to turn out
    too many voters

    February 6, 2008 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  25. Tia

    I love how so many people are excited about their candidate and cheering them on! I do worry a bit that many Obama supporters seem rabid in their shouting(even "shouting" in forums by using all capitals) campaign slogans. To me atleast it does not sway any voter that thinks ... and actually alientated me from his camp. I reminds me of some cult. I love various people but i never lose myself in that love. I love hearing opinions , view points and facts from Obama people and have found some enlightening not just energizing.Please people , can we state personal views and leave the repetition of slogans and poster speak to the campaign events?

    February 6, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
1 2 3