on Tue May 8 02:06:11 2012
Obama campaign denies voter registration erosion
By BYRON TAU | 5/7/12 12:10 PM EDTThe Obama campaign is pushing back against reports that voter registration is eroding among key constituencies like Hispanics and blacks.
"Registration among Latinos and African Americans has never been higher. There are more Americans of both backgrounds registered to vote today than there were when President Obama was elected," Clo Ewing, director of constituency press, wrote in a blog post attacking a recent Washington Post story on registration erosion.
The Post reported last week, using Census data, that Hispanic voter registrations declined 5 percent nationwide, while black voter registration declined 7 percent nationwide. The state-by-state picture showed Hispanic voter registration down as much as 28 percent in states like New Mexico.
The Obama campaign noted that the Post's data came from the 2010 census, and is an outdated measure of voter registration.
"It's misleading to compare May 2012's voter rolls to November 2010's, since one refers to a national election for which registration has far from closed, and the other is not. A fair apples-to-apples comparison would look at the same point in a similar election cycle. So let's do what the Post didn't: when you compare the number of Latino and African American voters in November 2010 to those in November 2006, or compare the rolls in May 2012 to May 2008, it's clear that the number goes up, not down, in each case," Ewing wrote.
Each state has its own voter registration rules — it's hard to get a clear national picture. Independent data has confirmed that youth voter registration has eroded in key states for Obama — but many states do not necessarily collect the same data for ethnic and racial groups.