Political Shifts: The 2018 Midterm Elections
In the 2018 midterm elections, Michigan and the county saw the beginnings of a political shift. Voter turnout in the state jumped a significant 13.8 percentage points to 55.4% of the voting age population, the highest voter turnout since 1962. Macomb County also set a new precedent with a voter turnout of 59%, the highest turnout since 1974. In addition to a larger number of voters, the election also brought about some meaningful changes, as two U.S house seats were flipped to Democrat, and voters elected a Democratic governor, attorney general, and secretary of state.
The graphic below depicts all the Michigan counties and how they voted in 2018 compared to various demographic markers.
Based on the graphic, Macomb County (the dark blue dot) is slightly above the state median for minorities, slightly below the median for age, on par with the median for college education, and clearly above the median for income.
Most importantly, the charts depict that Macomb County was just barely on the “more Democratic” side of the voting margin in every category, highlighting the mutable nature that makes the county such a battleground area.
The Future of Macomb County
During the last election cycle, Trump visited Michigan a total of 15 times, and so far he has visited Michigan again 5 times as a part of his reelection campaign. As recent as Sunday, July 19th, Trump claimed that Michigan (and other Democrat-run states) are stopping him from holding the “big rallies” he wants to have.
On the other hand, Joe Biden has only visited Michigan twice as a part of his campaign, and one of those visits was for a primary debate. Now that the battle to become the Democratic nominee is over, it’s important that Biden not take such an important state as a given.
Most of the political analysts in the country are in agreement that Michigan will be a key battleground state in 2020, and history shows that Macomb County is a key part of securing the state. Although Biden is expected to have a comfortable lead in Michigan, it’s important that he stay connected with local voters and their concerns. Making the assumption that Michigan is a given win could be a big mistake that costs Biden the trust of the working-class people on the ground here in Michigan, and subsequently a key win he needs in his fight for the presidency.