President Barack Obama cautioned Democrats on Wednesday night to avoid the drop in voter turnout that doomed the party in the 2010 midterms.
Speaking at a fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee in Miami, Obama said that the lower turnout that typifies non-presidential election years often trips up his party. Democrats triumphed in 2008 and 2012 — when Obama and Vice President Joe Biden were on the ballot — but Republicans dominated in 2010 and re-claimed control of the House of Representatives.
“Sometimes, the presidential campaigns are the ones that get a lot of notice and a lot of fanfare,” Obama said, according to an official White House transcript. “And what happens, particularly among Democrats, is when it’s not a presidential year our turnout drops off. That’s what happened in 2010. You had this big gap between the number of people who vote on a presidential year and those who vote on a non-presidential year. We can’t think in those terms.”
Voter turnout in midterm elections often skews older, whiter and more affluent, creating an electorate that decidedly favors Republicans.