Thousands of Republicans change party affiliation in four states after Capitol riots
Nicole Silverio, DCNF
Thousands of registered Republican voters have changed their affiliation following the Capitol riots on Jan. 6, according to multiple reports.
In the week following the riot, 4,600 GOP voters in Colorado, 6,000 in North Carolina and 10,000 in Pennsylvania switched parties, according to NPR. Data from the Arizona Secretary of State’s office informed ABC News Thursday that 7,500 Republicans in Arizona have changed their affiliation.
The majority of Republicans leaving the party reportedly changed their status to unaffiliated, according to the reports.
A Colorado Public Radio News analysis found that many Republicans said they left their party because they felt the GOP betrayed former President Donald Trump.
As of today, 9,944 Arizona Republicans have changed their party registration since the assault on the U.S. Capitol on January 6th. Please, fellow Republicans, we cannot continue to excuse former President Trump's behavior and promote falsehoods about the election.
— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) January 27, 2021
Phil Trubia, a Mesa County resident, told CPR that the Republicans Party upset him for turning against Trump during the Electoral Certification.
“I do feel there is a split. I’m not necessarily doing it to hurt the Republicans Party, but the way they turned their backs completely on Trump, that kind of got me really upset,” Trubia told CPR.
After the riots, Colorado lost about 0.5% of its Republican voters, according to CPR.
“I didn’t leave the party,” 28-year registered Republican Kimrey Rhinehardt of North Carolina said, according to The News & Observer. “The party left me. My belief system and my values remain unchanged.”
The 10,000 registered Pennsylvania Republicans who changed their affiliation make up a small fraction of the 3.5 million total who are registered as GOP voters in the state, University of Florida voting and elections expert Michael McDonald told The Hill.
University of Maryland political science professor Michael Hanmer told ABC News that the registration changes are likely due to the Capitol riot.
“The imbalance is something that I think is interesting to think about, given it’s proven right now, it seems mostly by Republicans reacting to the events of Jan. 6. But going forward, I think there was already this trend in place that people were dissatisfied with both parties to a large extent, Hanmer said.
Approximately 30,000 Republican voters nationwide have switched their party affiliation, according to Newsweek.
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