Republicans’ primary turnout averaged 167% of Democrats’ turnout. Possible good news for this fall’s Republican candidates.

Democrats pile into presidential general elections, but are often no-shows in other elections.

From 1998 through 2014 in Colorado, Republicans voted at a rate that was 152% of the Democrats’ turnout. Our Republicans vote more faithfully than Democrats.

2014’s Republican primary turnout advantage nearly matches 2002’s advantage. Here are the percentages.

Year    Sen       Gov         Avg
2014    156%    177%     167%
2010    120%    129%    124%
2006     n/a        136%    136%
2002    172%    192%    182%
1998    150%    148%    149%

2014 is looking like 2006 – with the parties’ status reversed. President Bush sported terrible job approval numbers in 2006, President Obama now drags down every Democrat.

2012 had low Republican primary turnout nationally. Respected political observers Prof. Michael McDonald and Curtis Gans thought low turnout proved Romney left Republican voters unexcited.  

Both Udall and Hickenlooper appear to be in trouble under this theory. Hickenlooper pulled 34% fewer Democratic votes than in 2010 – uncontested both years. Udall had no contest both years. He dropped almost 4,000 votes. United evidence many Democrats may yawn “why bother?”


Hickenlooper barely beat Rollie Heath’s 2002 comparative excitement level among Colorado’s Democrats. Heath and Hickenlooper both supported gigantic tax hikes – a voter turnoff. That’s exciting news for both Cory Gardner and Bob Beauprez.