Bristol County, Mass Goes Big for Trump
It is official: there is huge support for Donald Trump in Bristol County. The Republican front-runner one a smashing victory in Massachusetts and the GOP presidential primary Tuesday. He brought in nearly 50% of the vote and received almost 300,000 votes more than Mitt Romney earned in the 2008 or 2012 contests.
No part of the state delivered a bigger landslide for Trump then Bristol County. Bristol County is a ring of four cities and 16 towns that hugs the Rhode Island border and is mostly represented by Democratic Congressman Joe Kennedy III.
Trump took 55% of the vote in Bristol County, a higher share of support that he received in any other region of Massachusetts. Marco Rubio came in second there was 16% as well as John Kasich with 13% and Ted Cruz a 10%.
Trump won every city and town in Bristol County. In its largest city New Bedford, he got 58% of the vote. He received even more 62% in its second-largest city, Fall River. He also took 59% in the city of Taunton and 50% in the city of Attleboro. The exit poll of the Massachusetts Republican primary voters showed basically no difference in backing for Trump between self identified Republicans and independents, with the two groups giving trump 51% and 50% support. The story was very different on the Democratic side, where Hillary Clinton barely pulled out a squeaker with a win over Bernie Sanders and Bristol County. Clinton received 49.4% of the vote and Sanders received 49% of the vote with 300 votes separating them.
Sanders had won a sizable number of Bristol County communities, however Clinton was saved by her victories in the vote rich cities of New Bedford with 54%, Fall River 57% and Taunton 50%. Sanders did win the county's fourth and smallest city, Attleboro with 54% of the vote. The results marked a major erosion of support for Clinton compared to 2008 when she easily defeated Barack Obama across Massachusetts and took 69% of the vote in Bristol County, making it her best County that year. Not this time.
On Tuesday Clinton's total number of votes in the county slid by nearly half compared to 2008, while Sanders received almost 10,000 more votes than Obama did. The narrowness of Clinton's win statewide in Bristol County will likely be seen as vindicating her campaigns last-minute decision to send former Pres. Bill Clinton from midday swing through Taunton and New Bedford on Tuesday to drum up support for his wife. At roughly 46,000, voter turnout in the Republican primary in Russell County was notably higher than in 2012 or 2008. On the Democratic side the turnout declined from 90,000 in 2008 to 74,000 and 2016. Rhode Island's presidential primary is April 26.