Statehood likely to win overwhelming majority in Puerto Rico status vote

by | Jun 8, 2017 | Headlines, Polls, Status | Comments

In the upcoming June 11 Puerto Rico status plebiscite, statehood is likely to win with an overwhelming of the votes cast according to our latest poll: 91.2% of respondents supported the annexation of the islands as the 51st state of the United States. These results confirm theories based on recent news regarding the vote, the participating groups, and the political climate in the US territory. Following our methodology, these results were weighted based on previous voting history and demographics.

Participation

Taking respondents answers, and assuming those who selected ‘None of the above’ as an option will either cast blank ballots or will not take part in the vote, we end up with a rather high participation rate. Other polls have arrived at similar numbers in terms of expected turnout, but there is reason to be skeptical. While Puerto Rico usually has high turnout in elections, that tends to happen mostly during general elections, not midterm electoral events. In addition, nearly all opposition political groups are boycotting the event for different reasons, including the Popular Democratic Party which is the second largest group in the islands. If the PDP manages to have its call for voting abstention followed by its base, expect turnout to drop significantly, perhaps even below the 50% mark.

The numbers for this particular result can also be taken with doubt since because of the boycott calls, only statehood supporters seem to be engaged in the campaign process, which promoted their overwhelmingly majority in the participation in our poll.

 

Gender

Turning to demographics, we don’t see any particular pattern of support for any status option by gender lines, though in our poll we did register an oversampling of the male segment of the population.

 

Education

In terms of education levels, statehood registers broad support across all levels, again with no discernible pattern.

 

Age

 

Where we do see a clear pattern, and an almost ideal bell curve, is in terms of age groups and their support for the status quo/abstention. As you can see above, the territorial status and none of the above options register the highest levels in the 25-34 and 35-44 age groups, otherwise declining in either direction after that. Interestingly however, statehood support only rises directly proportionally with age. As it turns out, the younger segment of the population has a growing affinity for independence according to this poll, with 14.2% supporting the option (independence has never gotten more than 5% in previous votes). If this is a trend, it could signal an interesting shift in demographics for Puerto Rico’s politics.

Demographic shifts aside, a statehood victory is likely guaranteed, as a result of both rising levels of support in the population amidst Puerto Rico’s crisis, and the fact that the only main political party promoting participation in the electoral event is the pro-statehood New Progressive Party. For now, we know that come Sunday afternoon, we will very likely declare statehood as having won a second consecutive plebiscite in Puerto Rico.

Extended Results & Analysis

For an extended look at the results, including data analysis and corrections based on voter behavior, download the plebiscite questions results: