In just a few hours polls will close in Michigan and Mississippi for the Democratic and Republican parties. While both states could be in question on the Republican side – Donald Trump’s recent trip through mainstream media may have turned off further voters, only Michigan is up for question on the Democratic side. Secretary Hillary Clinton will definitely win the state of Mississippi, while Michigan is still in the air despite poll numbers leading many pundits to believe otherwise.
Much like the Kansas, Maine, and Nebraska Caucuses the possibility for a Sanders is clearly present. Depending upon a number of factors, the opposite may also be true and see Secretary Clinton score a decisive win.
What Makes Michigan Interesting?
Senator Sanders has won three out of the last four projections. Using a model that accounted for polling, election trends, past primary results, and other measures in those states – Suggestive was able to project those races accurately. However, during the 2008 Primary cycle Michigan was under punishment by the Democratic National Committee for moving their primary ahead in the election schedule.
Hillary Clinton’s named remained on the ballet, while the majority of her opponents had their names removed – including now President Barack Obama. While a heavy African Americanpopulation is suited to help Secretary Clinton hold off an insurgent Bernie Sanders, his performance at the recent Debate and Town Hall may help him at the polls today.
The vast majority of those watching and participating in online polls favored Sanders performance at each event.
Senator Sanders has also spent more time and money in Michigan, which could sway a number of voters in his direction. However, there is one key component that will sway the results in Michigan. Over the past week polls have shown Sanders cutting Clinton’s lead in half prior to the most recent Debate and Town Hall.
Voter Turnout & Demographics
In recent states where Senator Sanders has targeted (Colorado, Kansas, Maine, Minnesota and Nebraska) he has been able to turnout the vote with major success, helping break Democratic Primary voter turnout in several of those states. If that trend continues he will more than likely defeat Secretary Clinton in Michigan. If turnout is down, Secretary Clinton will capture a rather decisive victory in the Great Lakes State.
Michigan has an Open Primary that allows Independent and Unaffiliated voters to weigh in, which heavily favors Sanders. The Senator has outperformed polls in Caucus and Open Primary states due to his cross over appeal among Independent voters. If Sanders has any chance at winning this election voter turnout will be the main contributing factor to his victory.
Secretary Clinton’s record supporting legislation that has negatively impacted the lives of minorities has come into focus on the national stage over the last week. There is a possibility that Michigan is the tipping point that finally sees Senator Sanders chip away at the votes the Secretary is receiving from the African American community.
The exit polls from Michigan will be very telling about the Democratic race going forward.