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Enthusiasm gap? Tuesday’s GOP primary turnout lags behind 2008

by George Bennett | February 1st, 2012

Many Republicans regard the 2008 election as a low point for GOP enthusiasm. But Florida Republicans were more amped about the state’s presidential primary four years ago than they were this year.

Not quite 1.7 million Republicans cast ballots in Tuesday’s Florida Republican presidential primary — about 276,000 fewer than in 2008. Turnout Tuesday was 41.1 percent — down from 51 percent four years ago, when Florida effectively handed John McCain the Republican nomination.

Evidence of an enthusiasm problem in the GOP?

“I don’t think we have an enthusiasm gap,” says Republican Party of Florida spokesman Brian Hughes.

“I would argue you had more competitive top candidates who were putting money into get-out-the-vote,” in 2008, Hughes said.

The 2008 GOP field included McCain, Mitt Romney, Rudy Giuliani and Mike Huckabee. Tuesday’s race was essentially a two-man contest between Romney and Newt Gingrich as Rick Santorum and Ron Paul spent little or no time or money in the state.

Also, the 2008 primary ballot included a statewide property tax-limitation question that helped drive turnout. There were no other statewide ballot questions or races on Tuesday’s ballot.

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8 Responses to “Enthusiasm gap? Tuesday’s GOP primary turnout lags behind 2008”

  1. Larry Peterson Says:

    What a scam! The next election is shaping up to be as big of a sham as the last. Do you know why Sarah Palin’s bus tour was really canceled? Do you know why she stayed 30 miles away from the second debate and chose the death of Steve Jobs to announce that she’s not running? Know what leaked out? Sarah Palin and Cain aren’t in the race for the same reason, the truth leaked out.
    http://PalinsDirtyLittleSecret.blogspot.com

  2. OldUncleTom Says:

    So, 6 out of 10 Florida Republicans didn’t care enough to vote, and I heard that 4 out of 10 that voted wished they had better candidates.

    Must be sad to be a Republican in Florida these days…

  3. Blues Brother Says:

    I just needed to say I love Georges new look, The sunglasses the tie. Gearge you have really stepped it up a notch!Don’t go overboard and start playing the saxophone, I will not be able to handle that! And regarding the enthusiasm gap, no worries, enough of the people sorry they voted for Obama will make upfor any lack of enthusiasm in the GOP. It is pretty much over, but hey do what you have to to sell newspapers and TV advertisements, right?

  4. RENEGADE Says:

    I think its hard to get motivated when the canidates are a poor choice and with the economy improving they probably realize that it doesn’t really matter who the nominee is, President Obama is sure to win re-election.

  5. ALLEN WEST MUST GO Says:

    R-MONEY says he’s not concerned about the very poor and he’s off in Vegas getting an endorsement from Donald “You’re Fired” Trump…

    …Meanwhile, our President was at the National Prayer Breakfast talking about American values and helping the poor and middle class.

    And people wonder why there is an enthusiasm gap?

    The right wing is PATHETIC.

  6. The economy is great Says:

    Just keep telling yourself that the economy is recovering and click your heals together and just maybe you’ll end up in Kansas. Flush em all starting with Obama until we start getting leaders that actually want to solve problems instead of blaming others for them. Hate the left or hate the right, they both suck and have falled the American people. If the guy we elect isn’t getting it done then it is time to get them out.Obama had control of the Congress for 2 years and did very little unless you are counting golf outings and vacations. Instead of Commander in Chief he should be called Golfer or Vacationer or Teleprompter in Chief. He is a pitiful example of a leader.

  7. OSCAR Says:

    @The economy is great

    The economy is great and Obama has done a great job.
    Of course you already know the economy is Bush’s fault. You call it blaming others everyone else calls it the facts.
    Of course you have to make up something to try to make our African American president look bad. Since you just can’t stand the fact he is president. And smarter than you, and more successful than you.

  8. @oscar Says:

    Playing the race card? Really? Oh and blame Bush for everything? Are you on the GOP payroll?

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