October 31, 2012 at 10:04 am
Palm Beach County Republicans are concerned about Democrats staking out an advantage in early voting, according to a memo obtained by FLDemocracy/WPTV.
The memo, from an adviser to a local GOP campaign, said that the Democratic turnout effort is “cleaning our clock.”
“The early and absentee turnout is starting to look more troubling,” the GOP operative said in the memo sent Tuesday. “Even if Romney wins the state (likely based on polls), the turnout deficit in PBC will affect our local races.”
At a Delray Beach early voting site on Tuesday, Democrats were making their presence known– handing out sheets printed with the Democratic slate. “Alright Democrats, you’ve got your cheat sheet here,” said Robert Murstein, a Democratic party volunteer.
Murstein said he is carrying out his party’s game plan. “Just to get as many people in the process as possible,” Murstein said.
During the first three days of countywide early voting, 60 percent of ballots cast have been by Democrats and 22 percent have been cast by Republicans. That’s a 38 point edge, even though Democrats only hold a 14 point lead in registrations.
Republican Dina Keever, who is running for state attorney, said she is hoping labels won’t define her race. “I’m not worried at all because I’m not a party candidate,” Keever said.
Keever’s opponent, Democrat Dave Aronberg, said the memo shows the depth of Democratic enthusiasm.
“There was a really great get out the vote effort to concentrate on banking those votes early, don’t leave it to the vagaries of the weather on election day,” Aronberg said.
Palm Beach County GOP Chair Sid Dinerstein, who is responsible for leading the local Republican ground-game, criticized the memo.
“For the most part it’s not particularly relevant, there’s not a single person who went to the polls today who didn’t know who they were voting for for president,” said Dinerstein. “There are differences down ticket. All our guys got their stuff before they went to the polls.”
Dinerstein insisted motivation will not be a problem for GOP voters in Palm Beach County.
“We are broken glass Republicans, meaning we will walk over broken glass to vote,” Dinerstein said.
Text of memo:
The early and absentee turnout is starting to look more troubling.
As of yesterday, Republicans made up only 22% of early voters and 30% of returned absentee votes.
This is closer to (and worse than) 2008 where we saw 19% EV and 38% of the absentees. 2010 (our blowout year) was 33% of EV and 45% of AB.
Conslusion: The Democrat turnout machine in the county has been very effective and they are cleaning our clock. Even if Romney wins the state (likely based on polls), the turnout deficit in PBC will affect our local races.
When you are calling or canvassing, remind people how effective our opposition has been and how they must not only get themselves to the polls, but their friends and neighbors as well.
– Evan Axelbank