Michael Bitzer

Political Columnist

Dr. Michael Bitzer is an associate professor of politics and history at Catawba College, where he also serves as the 2011-2012 Swink Professor for Excellence in Classroom Teaching and the chair of the department of history & politics.  A native South Carolinian, he holds graduate degrees in both history and political science from Clemson University and The University of Georgia’s School of Public and International Affairs. Dr. Bitzer’s studies have focused on Southern politics, campaigns and elections, and a variety of topics in American politics.

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The Party Line
12:00 am
Mon May 21, 2012

Yellow-Dog Democrats Still Influential, But Waning

In my last two postings, “Pebbles” posed some interesting questions about the May primary election that I thought would make for some good feedback and responses:

Pebbles: “I’d be interested to know if the counties that voted against the amendment have more registered Democrats, Republicans, or Independents.”

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The Party Line
12:00 am
Thu May 17, 2012

Breakdown Of Amendment Vote Indicates GOP Base Hasn’t Solidified For Romney

In looking at the amendment vote across the state, we see some things that really shouldn’t surprise a lot of folks regarding the results, but then there are some aspects that, when you dig deeper, are surprising.

First, we heard a lot about the controversy within the black community regarding the vote on the amendment defining marriage, in particular the split between social conservatism and civil rights.

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The Party Line
12:00 am
Fri May 11, 2012

Dissecting The Amendment One Vote

The dust has partially settled on the May 8th primary, and here are some early thoughts on the results:

Turnout

While the statewide average voter turnout was 34.3 percent, over half of the counties have turnout above that average (56). But, in looking at those 56 counties, only four of the top 10 counties with the largest voter registration were above the state-wide voter turnout average: Wake (Raleigh), Buncombe (Asheville), Durham (Durham), and Guilford (Greensboro).

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The Party Line
12:00 am
Fri May 11, 2012

Dissecting The Amendment One Vote

The dust has partially settled on the May 8th primary, and here are some early thoughts on the results:

Turnout

While the statewide average voter turnout was 34.3 percent, over half of the counties have turnout above that average (56). But, in looking at those 56 counties, only four of the top 10 counties with the largest voter registration were above the state-wide voter turnout average: Wake (Raleigh), Buncombe (Asheville), Durham (Durham), and Guilford (Greensboro).

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The Party Line
12:00 am
Mon May 7, 2012

Primary Serves As General Election For Many Legislative Seats

Tuesday’s primary election is full of interesting competitions on the ballot: several competitive U.S. House districts (including the 9th and 8th here in the Charlotte area), a battle among Democrats to go up against Republican Pat McCrory, and the constitutional amendment regarding marriage.

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Election 2012
12:00 am
Fri May 4, 2012

Campaign Ads Confuse The Voting Landscape

As we get to the May 8th primary election, we are seeing more and more television advertisements for various candidates, particularly in the hotly contested 9thCongressional District, but also in the 8th Congressional District just to the east of Charlotte.


In modern campaigns, the vehicle of choice among candidates has consistently been television. For political advertisers, TV offers a number of advantages that other forms of political communication can’t meet.

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The Party Line
12:00 am
Tue May 1, 2012

Young Vote Still Strong For Obama. Question Is Turnout

2008 National Exit Poll Results by Age (percents under age groups indicate percentage of the electorate)

With President Obama’s visit to North Carolina and to UNC Chapel Hill last week, commentators have been observing that it’s the opening salvo in the Democrat’s attempt to re-energize the youth vote — a critical bloc that in 2008 helped to give Obama the win.

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The Party Line
12:00 am
Thu April 26, 2012

Judges Will Likely Have Final Say On Amendment One

With early voting under way, North Carolinians have a variety of offices and issues to resolve leading up to the May 8th primary election.  But the voting contest that seems to be attracting the most attention is the proposed amendment to the state constitution regarding marriage.

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The Party Line
12:00 am
Fri April 20, 2012

Kickoff To 2012: A Redux Of 1980′s Most Memorable Lines

Romney’s visit to Charlotte to “prebut” Obama’s upcoming September acceptance speech made headlines, but on the same day the Romney campaign released a second blow against the president, in the guise of Obama himself.

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