I correctly predicted the total turnout would be about 18%, but I was dead wrong about the outcome in the 6th Representative District Special Election on Saturday , Dec 20th.Relative turnout appears to be the key to Republican Tom Kovach’s victory over Democrat, Mike Migliore. Turnout in districts where Kovach won was measurably higher than districts where Migliore won.
There are twelve election districts in the 6th Representative District. Migliore won in 7 of 12 election districts . Kovach won in 5 of 12 election districts. District wide turnout was 18.1%.Turnout in the districts won by Kovach was 25.5%. Turnout in the districts Migliore won was 13.5%.
The following districts underperformed on turnout significantly :
3rd of the 6th (Edgemoor)-Migliore won 91-56,but with only 147 of 1,532 voters casting ballots turnout was 9.6%. Democrats outnumber Republicans 873-315 in this district.
5th of the 6th (Gov. Printz Blvd North of Edgemoor)-Migliore won 84-38, but with only 122 of 1,547 voters casting ballots turnout was 7.9%. Democrats outnumber Republicans 805-372 in this district.
10th of the 6th-(Claymont area)-Migliore won 140-113, but with only 253 of 1,885 voters casting ballots turnout was 13.4%. Democrats outnumber Republicans in the district 929-492.
11th of the 6th ( Claymont area)- Migliore won 50-39, but with only 89 of 1,319 voters casting ballots turnout was 6.7%. Democrats outnumber Republicans 731-302.
12th of the 6th- (Lea Blvd/N Market St)- Migliore won 34-14 ,but with only 48 of 452 voters casting ballots turnout was only 10.6%. Democrats outnumber Republicans in this election district 217-116.
Migliore won these five election districts 455-260 or 63.6%,but turnout was too low to offset Kovach’s numbers in the five districts he won because turnout in these five districts was 9.64% The Democratic registration edge in these five election districts is 3555 to1597, better than 2-1. A not much higher turnout here would have supplied the 74 additional votes Migliore would have needed to win.
Kovach’s winning districts had an average turnout of 25.5% with the lowest turnout among these five districts being 16.7% . In the only 2 election districts in the 6th Representative District where Republicans outnumber Democrats , the 6th ED (Lombardy Elementary School area) and the 9th ED (Mt Pleasant High School area), turnout was 20.5% and 34.7 %, respectively. Kovach won the 6th ED by 186-145 and won the 9th ED by 73-30. He won these two election districts by 84 votes, more than the 73 vote margin of victory. Republicans outnumber Democrats 639-612 in the 6th and 129-102 in the 9th .
The 2nd of the 6th (also voting at Mt Pleasant High School) and the 7th of the 6th (voting at the Mary Campbell Center) were also pivotal to Kovach’s victory since he won the 2nd 245-205 despite a 753-523 Democratic registration edge and won the 7th 270-184 despite a slight 600-578 Democratic registration edge. Turnout was 25.9 % in the 2nd and 29.7% in the 7th.
Data is not currently available of turnout by party on the election commissioner’s website,but it appears likely in these two districts Republicans had a higher percentage turnout than the Democrats. It is possible that as more information becomes available, we may also find that people registered something other than Democrat or Republican may have been the deciding factor since this group makes up 24.7 % of the registered voters in the 6th Representative District.
We don’t know right now exactly who voted by party, but we can tell that where Democrats should have been stronger turnout was light and where Republicans had to win, turnout was heavier.