I was curious what any of you might know about researching voter data. This is a new area for me and so I'm not real familiar with what is available and where I might get it. The organization that is seeking it is ok with having to submit Sunshine Act requests if needed.
Specifically, there was an issue passed in the state of MO last year that they would like to know precinct by precinct of how they voted. I think from there, I could get demographic information as needed and am familiar with gathering that information, although, I have never gathered demographic information at a precinct level.
Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you.
Unfortunately, voter turnout (or preference) is not part of the American Community Survey. Voter eligibility (by age and citizenship status) is, but not turnout.For precinct-level turnout data, I would think you'd need to go directly to the state (or possibly even county), as there's no federal agency that has that type of data. (That said, the New York Times made a precinct-level election map in 2016, and it's amazing: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/upshot/election-2016-voting-precinct-maps.html).For county-level data, I'd look at Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections, which despite being produced by a guy named Dave in Massachusetts, is probably the most comprehensive source of county-level election results nationally (but the data from him isn't necessarily free). https://uselectionatlas.org/
You also might encounter difficulties gathering demographic data at the precinct-level, since ACS data itself doesn't exist at that geography. You'd probably need to apply block group-level demographic data to the precinct maps, which could be a bit messy since they probably don't generally line up, but it's probably your best option.Keep us updated, I'm curious what you end up doing.
There's an outfit called OpenElections.net that's using volunteers to compile precinct-level information. They could always use help. http://openelections.net/
Tim Henderson, that's a neat project- thank you for sharing. I'm going to look into seeing how I might be able to help. Looks like they have quite a bit of work left to do.
Tim Henderson, I sent an email to find out about volunteering and to see if the project was still ongoing because it looked like either it was really far behind in their work based on the last updates made or the project had stalled.
Anyhow, I got an email back fairly quick with already giving me an assignment. LOL It looks like its pretty straightforward stuff and I'll help as often as I can. They are focusing on general elections right now, then primaries and then go from there.
Thanks for the information!