While almost 80% of search engine users completely ignore paid or sponsored ads, it is safe to say that almost every American has seen a political ad in this election season, especially those in swing states.
One of these states, North Carolina, was crucial in the path towards the presidency. Poll experts say that simply because of the number of electoral votes, once Trump clinched this state, Clinton’s chances of victory became quite narrow.
However, even before the results were in, the GOP was looking forward to winning the state. Why? According to them, the decrease in the number of African American men and women voting.
Compared to the 2012 election, early African American voting was down 8.5%, when white early voter turnout increased by a full 22.5%. In total, African Americans made up 22.4% of North Carolina’s voting population.
Both this election and last, this notorious swing state has voted Republican.
This decrease is extremely significant to the Republican party as they believe this voter shift indicates that the the surge of voters who came out specifically for President Obama is deteriorating.
“The Republican ground game is showing that motivated statewide volunteers and extensive ground game are better indicators of electoral success than the number of candidate-specific offices one has,” Robin Hayes, the state party chairman, said to the Huffington Post. “Further, the connected weaknesses of Hillary Clinton, Deborah Ross, and Roy Cooper when combined with the clear Democrat voter apathy, shows the once dynamic Obama Coalition crumbling and tired.”
The low turnout could stem from a host of issues; however, many political experts believe that African Americans did not show up at the polling booths because of obstructionism from members of the state’s Republican party. They claim that the GOP actively tried to reduce early voting opportunities, in particular for African Americans, to ruin Clinton’s chance of swinging the state to blue.
A memo was sent out by the GOP in late August asking to change early voting laws because of special party requests, and just last week the NAACP sued the state after election officials in Beaufort, Moore and Cumberland counties cancelled more than 3,500 voter registrations. The NCAAP believes this action was targeted specifically at black voters, because black voters were disproportionately accounted for in all three counties.
In Beaufort county, 91 of the 131 cancelled registrations were of black voters.
The state fired back saying that the registrations were cancelled because campaign mailers sent out during the previous months were returned as undelivered.
This voter block is a violation of the National Voter Registration Act.