Voting Behavior and The Impact of The Black Vote in 2018 Mid-term Elections - Advancement Project - Advancement Project

Voting Behavior and The Impact of The Black Vote in 2018 Mid-term Elections

Washington, DC — Today, the NAACP and Advancement Project national office joined with the African American Research Collaborative to provide the first comprehensive analysis of how Black voters voted this cycle and why. The new poll of mid-term voters, conducted by the African American Research Collaborative (in collaboration with Latino Decisions and Asian American Decisions), examines African American voters across various competitive elections to determine how this electorate engaged in 2018 and how these findings might shape the future of elections.

The key takeaway of this poll is clear: mid-term 2018 wins across the country were dependent on voters of color, particularly Black voters.

  • 90% of Black voters supported Democratic House candidates, compared to just 53% of all voters; 45% of white voters; 73% of Latinos; and 72% of Asian voters

This election was a referendum on President Trump. Black voters see the President and the current GOP as divisive, racist, and a step back for the nation.

  • 85% of Black women and 81% of Black men have felt disrespected by Donald Trump.
  • Only 8% of Black voters believe Trump has a positive impact on Blacks, and 29% believe he has a negative impact.
  • 89% of Black women, 83% of Black men, and 50% of white voters believe Trump’s statements and policies will cause a major setback for racial progress
  • 91% of Black women, 86% of Black men, and 50% of white voters believe Trump and the GOP are using toxic rhetoric to divide the nation.

To have similar or greater wins in 2020, candidates must invest in and engage communities of color and the issues that matter most to these constituents.

  • Only 57% of Black voters were contacted from a campaign, political party, or community organization about voting in the months prior to Election Day.
    • 75% were contacted by Democrats
    • 34% were contacted by Republicans
    • 39% were contacted by another group
  • Black voters care about issues that affect all Americans, including:
    • Health care (40%)
    • The economy and jobs (21%)
    • Income inequality and low wages (17%)
  • Black voters support policies that unite and strengthen the nation:
    • Equal pay for men and women (88%)
    • Congress should pass the Dream Act (81%)
    • Strengthening the Affordable Care Act (79%)
    • Sexual harassment is a major problem (84%)
    • Congress should enact strict gun laws (81%)

Derrick Johnson, NAACP President and CEO, said, “There is one thing unequivocally clear about the data from this recent poll – if America is to become a democracy reflective of its ideals of liberty, opportunity and justice for all – it cannot do so without embracing, engaging and valuing the Black voter and voters of color, particularly Black women. This polls confirms that Black voters and the issues which motivate them can only be ignored at your own peril.”

Henry Fernandez, Principal, African American Research Collaborative, said, “African American voters are the backbone of the progressive vote in America and were essential to the blue wave that transformed American politics. In particular, Black women are a powerful political force with high turnout and unified vote choice that consistently and overwhelmingly supports progressive change. Black voters and other voters of color have reacted strongly against Trump but also against the Republican party as it embraces Trumpism. This was demonstrated in the 2018 midterms, as a majority of white voters supported Republican candidates, but Democrats won across the country as voters of color turned out in record numbers.”

Judith Browne Dianis, Executive Director, Advancement Project national office, said, “This past mid-term election cycle has shown us the power of communities of color in particular, and our desire to engage when people think we are apathetic. People of color turned out and were engaged. Voters of color are poised to seize our power and Advancement Project’s national office and our allies are readying for the next big thing – 2020 – to make sure our vote is protected; to ensure our elections are free, fair and accessible. This polling suggests that people want action, change as it relates to racial profiling, immigrant justice and, really, respect. We are making sure this happens by working with partners on the ground and using this research to inform our collective strategies and work toward a more diverse and just democracy.”

Professor Ray Block, Jr., University of Kentucky, African American Research Collaborative, said, “The 2018 American Election Eve Poll provides further evidence that America is anything but ‘post-racial.’ Identity-group considerations continue to shape the political landscape and guide the thoughts and actions of voters. The outcomes of the 2018 midterms confirm that African Americans turned out in strong numbers to support candidates who backed progressive issues, and candidates who seek (re)election in 2020 should remember the lessons learned from this past election.”

Jamal R. Watkins, NAACP Vice President of Civic Engagement, said, “What this poll and our previous research tells us is that, in order to reach Black voters, we must be explicit about our issues and specific in communicating directly with black voters. The NAACP recognized that in order to reach the infrequent Black voter, we must be specific in our language, issues and our relational organizing strategies. The NAACP engaged in a national campaign targeting Black voters via cutting edge messaging, analysis and outreach utilizing the entire spectrum of traditional canvassing and phone banking to digital and text messaging platforms – this showed in the record number who made it to the polls. No longer can the Black vote be ignored or disrespected or taken for granted.”

The poll focused on six states with competitive elections (CA, FL, GA, TX, NV, and AZ), as well as a national survey of House battleground districts. The poll was based on randomly selected voters across the entire state, or congressional district, giving all voters an equal chance to participate. This election eve poll, which more accurately captures voters of color than exit polls, will demonstrate how black voters shaped the outcome of the 2018 election.

View the polling here

View the presentation here

###

KEEP READING

Advancement Project National Office Condemns New Anti-Voting Rights Law in Florida that Creates Office of Election Crimes, Mandates Special Voter-Fraud Police Officers

FLORIDA – Moments ago, Governor DeSantis signed into law a bill passed by the Republican Florida legislature that claims to fight “voter fraud” by creating an Office of Election Crimes and mandating the appointment of “special” members of law enforcement.  This comes on the heels of the conclusion of a trial challenging SB 90, another anti-voting rights measure in Florida. This law was successfully challenged in court by several national and Florida civil rights and voting rights groups, including Advancement Project. Similar anti-voting rights bills…

Read More
Civil Rights Organizations Celebrate Decision in Florida Voting Rights Trial

Chief U.S. District Judge Mark Walker released a landmark decision today in the nationally-watched voting rights trial on Florida’s SB 90 bill to strike down key provisions of the law. This restrictive voting law passed by the Republican-majority legislature and Gov. DeSantis  would have put in place new constraints on the use of drop boxes and organizations conducting voter registration drives, among other measures that would significantly hinder access to the vote for millions of state residents.

Read More
Trial Challenging Florida’s SB 90 Voter Suppression Law Begins Today

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. —  A trial challenging SB 90 (League of Women Voters v Lee), a Florida measure to make it harder and in many ways impossible for Black and Brown people to vote, kicked off on Monday, Jan. 31. This is one of the first trials of the year challenging anti-voting laws at the state level. It comes just as national voting rights efforts have stalled, with the Senate recently failing to change rules on the filibuster to pass voting rights.  SB 90 was passed by the Republican-controlled Florida Legislature and Gov. Ron DeSantis in spring…

Read More
Advancement Project National Office Statement on the Senate’s Failure to Pass Voting Rights Legislation

WASHINGTON — Last night, the Senate blocked the Freedom to Vote John R. Lewis Act from advancing to a final passage vote. In response to this, Judith Browne Dianis, Executive Director of the Advancement Project National Office released this statement: “Last night, all 50 Senate Republicans and two Senate Democrats voted to maintain the filibuster and block the Freedom to Vote Act and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act from advancing to a final vote. These bills would protect voters and undo many of the barriers and restrictions that bar thousands of Black, Latinx, Asian, and…

Read More
Advancement Project National Office: “Passing voting rights legislation will protect right to free, fair, and accessible elections”

Washington, DC — In response to President Biden’s speech in Georgia today on voting rights legislation and the filibuster, Judith Browne Dianis, Executive Director of Advancement Project National Office, issued this statement: “While President Biden’s speech in Georgia today rings the alarm on voting rights, we need to put out the fire by immediately changing Senate rules on the filibuster to pass voting rights legislation.  “The urgency of this moment cannot be understated. Black voters and other voters of color need concrete action on voting rights immediately. Over 400 state-level bills undermining the right to vote were introduced last…

Read More
Advancement Project National Office Applauds the Passage of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act

CONTACT Jeralyn Cave [email protected] 202-921-7321 WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 4, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. The legislation restores key provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and helps prevent racial discrimination in voting by requiring states to obtain federal approval before enacting specific types of voting changes known to be racially discriminatory. The legislation also restores voters’ ability to challenge racial discrimination in court. Advancement Project National Office, a national racial justice and civil rights organization, released the following statement: “We applaud the efforts of the U.S.

Read More
Congress Must Combat New Wave of Voter Suppression, Pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act

On Monday, the U.S. House Judiciary hosted a hearing on H.R. 4, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act (VRAA), discussing the need to restore federal oversight of elections in the wake of a new wave of voter suppression sweeping the nation.

Read More
Advancement Project National Office Statement on Brnovich v. DNC Supreme Court Case

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court further weakened the Voting Rights Act in its ruling in Brnovich v. DNC, a case challenging voting laws in Arizona that discard provisional ballots cast in the wrong precinct and limit who can return absentee ballots. In a 6-3 decision, the Court ruled that Arizona's voting laws do not violate Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, and its ban on ballot harvesting was not enacted with a racially discriminatory purpose. Advancement Project National Office, a 21st century racial justice organization release the following statement.

Read More
Our Democracy is in Danger, But You Can Help Save It

By Jenna Israel, Communications Intern As a young person, it often feels like there’s not a lot you can do to change a world that seems like it’s not listening to you. But for me, helping other people vote, engage their government, and make their voices heard is my activity of choice during my free time. It is empowering. One of the most heartbreaking things to hear when speaking to people in my community is that someone won’t vote. Sometimes it’s because they can’t. Maybe they’ve lost their right to vote as the result of incarceration. Or maybe they can’t…

Read More
With Democracy at a Crossroads, Senate Must End Jim Crow Filibuster

For Immediate Release: June 22, 2021 Contact: Jeralyn Cave, [email protected] WASHINGTON — In light of the Senate blocking S. 1, the For the People Act, Advancement Project’s national office, a multiracial civil rights organization, released the following statement:  “It is indisputable that Republican leaders would rather fuel their rhetoric of white grievance and villainize people of color than protect our democracy,” said Jorge Vasquez, Power and Democracy Director of Advancement Project National Office. “They have long attempted to distract from their failures and pass anti-voter bills at the state…

Read More