‘No Party Preference’ is growing choice

With less than a month before election day, voter registration for this gubernatorial election year is higher than past years with the state’s highest office on the ballot.

However, total registration (as of Sept. 7, 2018) of 19.1 million voters is 300,000 fewer than the 19.4 million voters who registered for the 2016 presidential election.

Four years ago, for the last gubernatorial election, 17.8 million people registered to vote, which was 600,000 more than the 2010 election.

At the expense of both political parties, the second-favorite registration choice of voters is “No Party Preference.” This group of electors now totals 5.1 million people, 26.8 percent of total registered voters, and 1.1 million more than in 2014.

Republicans have fallen to third in California. About 4.7 million people are registered as Republican, 24.5 percent of the total registration. The number of Republicans is 300,000 fewer than four years ago and about 375,000 fewer than 2016 when President Donald Trump was the Republican standard bearer.

While registered Democrats are 43.8 percent of total registered voters compared to 44.9 percent two years ago, the number of registered Democrats is 8.3 million, about 400,000 fewer than 2016. However, this is still about 700,000 more than in 2014.

In Riverside County, registration as of Sept. 7 totals about 993,000, which is 67 percent of eligible voters.

Democrats have registered 372,000 (37.5 percent) voters and Republicans have registered 332,000 (33.4 percent). In this county, No Party Preference is the choice of only 23.8 percent of voters.

Nearly 40 percent of California’s “No Party Preference” voters live in Los Angeles and San Diego counties. Los Angeles County registered 1.4 million voters who declined a party preference and nearly 500,000 San Diego County voters had no preference. The greatest percentage of no preference is 32.8 percent in Santa Clara County, while 32.2 percent in San Francisco County were silent on a party choice.

There are 311,000 registered voters in Congressional District 36, of which 39 percent are Democrats, 32 percent Republican and 23 percent without a preference.

Within the Supervisorial District 3, which includes all of the Hill neighborhoods, there are 213,800 registered voters, the largest of the five county districts. However, unlike the other four, District 3 has 84,900 (39.7 percent) registered Republicans, the greatest of the five, and is the only district where Republicans outnumber all other parties. But District 3, with 54,400 voters without a preference, has more than the other four districts.

The current number of Riverside County registered voters is about 100,000 more than 2014 but about 26,000 less than for the 2016 presidential election.

Oct. 22 is the deadline to register to vote for the Nov. 6 election. Registration must be postmarked or submitted electronically no later than Oct. 22.

To register to vote on Nov. 6

Voter registration forms are available throughout Riverside County at most of the following locations: post offices, libraries, city or county offices, and the Department of Motor Vehicles.

People may also call the county’s Registrar of Voters Office at 951-486-7200.