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Hood: Party strength vs. registered voters

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How Republican is North Carolina? My answer is 63.

I realize this number has no meaning to you right now. I’ll explain it. For starters, I’m not saying that 63 percent of North Carolina voters are Republicans. Not even half are Republicans. In fact, out of 6.5 million people registered to vote in our state, some 30.5 percent are Republicans. Democrats make up 40.8 percent, Libertarians account for about half a percent, and unaffiliated voters make up the remaining 28 percent.

How people identify themselves often differs from their party registration, but that doesn’t explain my answer, either. Some right-of-center Democrats and unaffiliated voters are reliably Republican voters. Still, that would put the number of operational Republicans into the mid 40s, at most. (Operational Democrats are a comparable number, at least in North Carolina, with true swing voters representing only about a tenth of the electorate).

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Maybe if the districts weren't drawn up by race

Bad form by either party.

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