The Michigan primary is — thankfully — history. Here’s to the end of the circular firing squad and to the start of leveling aim at the true opponent: Bill Schuette and the Michigan GOP. (And, of course, the rest of the GOP, but I’m speaking right now to the hometown crowd.)
There’s a lot that went down Tuesday night, and a lot of surprises, but if you remember one thing out of all of it, remember this:
Tuesday’s voter turnout was the highest August voter turnout since … ever.
Let me explain.
Before Tuesday, the highest August voter turnout Michigan had ever seen was in 2002, when 1,722,869 people turned up to vote in a gubernatorial primary. Based on voter registration at the time, that was 23.3 percent of all registered voters.
This year, 2,023,069 people showed up to vote — more than 27 percent of the electorate.
I know that when showed up at my own polling place at 7 p.m., an hour before closing, I was told that they were 12 voters away from doubling their normal primary voting numbers. I quite literally did a little happy dance then and there! (The poll workers weren’t UNhappy, but they did look a bit frazzled!)
That in itself would be a great thing — to see such voter involvement. But that’s not even the best part. Here it is:
Democrat voters outpaced Republican voters yesterday by a 53-47 margin. (It’s easy to see this in a primary, as voters have to choose between a Republican, Democrat or third-party ballot).
That means we were more motivated to show up than they were. It’s a very hopeful harbinger of things to come, and it’s a marked turnaround from the way things were.
According to MLive, this “marks a gap closure since the August 2010 primary which saw 67 percent of voters selecting Republican candidates.” And that’s great news, because the alternative would give us a Bill Schuette governorship. And that would be a disaster.
So full speed ahead for Whitmer. It’s time to let the #BlueWave wash over Michigan!