Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of the John Locke Foundation. The author of this post is Dr. Andy Jackson.
How did voter registration in North Carolina change in 2022? What can we expect for voter registration in the state in 2023 and beyond?
Let's find out using the John Locke Foundation's Voter Registration Changes page.
Party Registration Changes in 2022
Here are the party registration changes for 2022:
- Democrats increased by 10,044 to 2,505,604.
- Republicans increased by 54,563 to 2,237,738.
- Unaffiliated increased by 193,911 to 2,662,913.
- Libertarians increased by 2,888 to 50,792.
- The Green Party was officially recognized (again) by the North Carolina State Board of Elections in the summer of 2022. They have gained 625 registrations since then.
What to Expect in 2023
County election boards across North Carolina will soon begin biennial list maintenance, removing inactive voter registrations from the roles. As the name suggests, it is done every two years around January of odd-numbered years.
Hundreds of thousands of registrations will be removed over the next several weeks. In 2021, the last year of biennial list maintenance in North Carolina, there was a net decline of 124,684 Democrats and 64,178 Republicans. Those numbers include new registrations, so the number of removed registrations was greater. We should expect similar declines in 2023.
Republicans Are on Pace to Overtake Democrats, but When?
Republicans have outgained Democrats in registrations (or lost fewer in list maintenance years) every year since the first Obama election in 2008. While that can change, Republicans are on pace to overtake Democrats by 2029 if the registration trends from the past twelve years continue for the next six.
Unaffiliated registrations surpassed Republicans in 2016 and Democrats last year to become the plurality registration in North Carolina.