Democrats are now a plurality of registered voters in Orange County and outnumber Republicans for the first time in recent history. Democratic voter registration has surpassed Republican and No Party Preference registration, according to the Orange County Registrar of Voters.
According to the Orange County Registrar of Voters, there are now 547,458 registered Democrats in Orange County and 547,369 Republicans. This is an increase of 23,834 registered Democrats since the final report before the 2018 midterms when Democrats captured four Republican-held Congressional seats and gained control of the entire Orange County Congressional Delegation.
“The blue wave in our community last year laid the groundwork for the future of our local party and our county. This new plurality in registration numbers show that Orange County residents are ready to join the rest of our state as a place where common sense policies can thrive, finally leaving behind the regressive rhetoric that has marginalized so many for too long. As continue to reach out to members of our community that have been left behind by Republicans, and as younger, more diverse residents show up to the polls, I believe we will see strong democratic candidates, from school boards to the presidency, shine in 2020,” said OCYD Co-Chair Kelsey Brewer
During the Reagan Era, Registered Republicans outnumbered Democrats in Orange County by 22 percentage points. In 1984, Reagan carried the county with more than 70% of the vote. The demographics in Orange County have shifted over the last forty years, with a rising number of college graduates, immigrants, and communities of color.
“Orange County Republican’s complicity in Trump’s divisive agenda is obvious to youth voters and communities of color, who understand the true value of our county’s diversity. These voters were the margin of victory in last year’s midterms, proving that when Democrats stand up for justice before elections, we can win both,” said OCYD Activist Director Tim Phan.
In 2016, Orange County broke for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. This was the first time Orange County voters backed a Democrat for president since the Great Depression. In 2018, the blue wave wiped out the entire Republican Congressional delegation in a shattering referendum on Trump.
“When the Republican Party excludes immigrants and people of color, there are consequences. This shift is the result of our community mobilizing in response to Trump,” said OCYD Board Member Aaron McCall
In response to the 2016 election, a county-wide registration effort was launched by Indivisible, NextGen, Field Team 6, the Democratic Party of Orange County, and Orange County Young Democrats.
“We credit extensive voter registration drives targeting emerging voters, combined with the Republican Party’s increasingly extreme rhetoric and the Trump administration’s exclusionary policies,” said OCYD Co-Chair Katerina Ioannides.
Orange County Young Democrats is the largest political organization for young people in Orange County and organized six voter registration drives during the 2019 year. OCYD has seen a 28% increase in membership this year.
Said OCYD Board Member Councilmember Manuel Chavez:
“My entire life people told me that Orange County isn’t the place for Democrats, but this historic shift shows that emerging voters. This should be an inspiration to Democrats across the country: if Orange County can overcome the impossible, then every County is ready to reject the regressive rhetoric of the Republican Party.”
Join OCYD on August 8 to celebrate the fall of the Orange Curtain and support our efforts to continue to mobilize Orange County’s youth.
This article was released by the Orange County Young Democrats.