Overall, it was an uneventful Kentucky GOP Primary, with only about 10% of registered voters showing up to the polls to give Mitt Romney his victory on Tuesday night.
Romney won easily with approximately 67% of the votes, with Ron Paul coming in a distant second with 12%, followed by Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich with 9% and 6%, respectively. Accordingly, Romney collected the state’s 42 delegates to add to his now seemingly symbolic running tally. Just as unsurprising was Ron Paul’s second place finish in the state. Paul has consistently been a popular figure in the state since his son, Rand, was elected by Kentuckians to the Senate in 2010.
The results came after little-to-no campaigning was done in the state, and no ads for the candidates were shown on local television. With such a small turnout of voters for the extremely late primary, and with Mitt Romney all but officially secured the Republican nomination, the majority of those who did decide to vote today likely fell in line with their party’s presumptive nominee. Kentucky is a closed primary state.
Perhaps the most surprising result of the evening came in regards to the Democratic primary race on which President Barack Obama was the only candidate. However, Democratic voters also had the option of choosing an “uncommitted” box. This option received an alarming 42% of the Democratic vote, with the president receiving 58%. The figure of registered Democrats who remained “uncommitted” unquestionably serves as a statement on behalf of many of Kentucky’s Democrats who have not been happy with many of the president’s policy initiatives.
And while Republicans have long been forecasted to win Kentucky’s electoral votes in the November general election (Bill Clinton in 1996 was the last Democratic presidential nominee to win Kentucky), the 42% of uncommitted registered Democrats likely serves as a blow to any hopes of Democrats pulling off an upset in the state. Also, this figure could very well affect the six congressional races occurring in the state this fall.