Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Significant increase in rural vote and decline in Democratic turnout were keys to election

The combination of an increase in rural voters and a decrease in Democrats casting ballots, especially in urban areas, were the main reasons Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton, Chuck Todd, Mark Murray and Carrie Dann report for NBC News. Rural areas accounted for 500,000 more votes than in 2012, while urban votes were down about 2.5 million.

Dante Chinni, of the American Communities Project, found that Trump scored big numbers in four types of rural counties: rural middle America, working-class communities, graying areas, and evangelical hubs. In all four areas, voter turnout was up from 2012 and Trump scored much larger victories than Mitt Romney did in 2012. (Click on chart for larger version) 
In "Graying America," areas with aging populations, 242,721 more people voted in 2016, increasing Trump's advantage in those areas by 10 points over what Romney did in 2012, Chinni writes. Votes were up by 163,349 in rural evangelical hubs, increasing Trump's winning margin by 12 points, votes were up 99,232 in rural working class communities, increasing Trump's victory by 17 points, and voters were up 16,252 in rural middle America, increasing Trump's victory by 17 points. At the same time, 796,725 fewer people in urban suburbs voted than in 2012 and 1,695,692 fewer people in big cities voted.

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