Nearly 1 million more Californians are registered to vote than at the same time four years ago, according to new figures from Secretary of State Debra Bowen.
California now has 15.9 million voters on the rolls, a trend Bowen attributes to the nation’s intense interest in this year’s presidential election.
Democrats saw a slight increase in their share of the political marking, rising from 43.16 percent in 2004 to 43.54 percent this month.
Republicans lost nearly three percentage points, dropping from 35.67 percent in 2004 to 32.84 percent in April.
And the ranks of “decline to state” voters continues to rise with an increase from 16.28 percent of registered voters in 2004 to 19.31 percent in April.
Unfortunately, just about every political observer in the state concludes that many of those voters won’t show up to vote in the June 3 state primary election, which many predict will be among one of the state’s lowest turn-out elections in years.
The state Legislature and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger stripped the presidential primary from from the June 3 slot and moved it to Feb. 5, arguing that it would finally make California relevant in the primary battle.
That didn’t happen. Instead, a bunch of other states moved up their primaries up, too.
Just think: With the race between sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama this close, what would be happening in California today if it had kept its presidential primary in June?
Just perhaps, perhaps the candidates would be holding public appearances with the voters and the press rather than flying into exclusive affluent enclaves for cash infusions.