2016 Election Results in Kalamazoo County

The trends that led to Donald Trump’s statewide victory in Michigan also affected Kalamazoo County.  Trump did well in rural areas.  He also did much better in downscale areas of Comstock and Galesburg.  He did badly in Kalamazoo and underperformed in upscale areas of Portage and Oshtemo.

Compare Romney (2012) and Trump (2016):
Trump got the same two-party percentage (43.2%) as Romney in Kalamazoo County.  The following map compares Trump and Romney.  More green is better for Trump, more yellow/orange is worse for Trump (better for Romney).
Trump did best relative to Romney in Galesburg, Comstock 1-3, and K Township 1, all downscale areas.  Trump did worst relative to Romney in Portage 18 (Moorsbridge), Oshtemo 3, suburban Texas, and Bronson Boulevard, all wealthy upscale areas.
The State Board of Education can be used as a measure of generic R and D vote since almost nobody is familiar with the candidates.  The two-party percentages are Trump 43.2%, SBOE 48.1%.


Trump underperformed Republicn SBOE candidates everywhere except Comstock and Lakewood.  He did especially poorly in Western Portage, southern Kalamazoo, Texas, Oshtemo, and Gull Lake (all wealthy upscale areas).
The following maps show how local Republicans did in Kalamazoo County.  Kalamazoo County Treasurer Mary Balkema led Republicans in Kalamazoo County with 54.7%.
The GOP average (President/Congress/Clerk/ Prosecutor/Sheriff/Treasurer) was 45.6%.
The Republican party continues to lose ground in the City of Kalamazoo.  The results in the city are
34.0% Balkema
31.7% Upton
32.1% Snow
27.4% SBOE
23.1% Trump
22.4% Smith
22.2% Heppler
The most R precinct was #4 (Knollwood).  I suspect this was due to Fraternity Village supporting Trump.
The City of Portage saw many voters split tickets.
59.4% Balkema
57.6% Upton
56.2% Snow
52.4% SBOE
45.9% Trump
40.9% Smith
39.1% Heppler
Oshtemo Township has moved left in recent years.  The top of the ticket was too much for local candidates to overcome.
52.1% Balkema
50.2% Upton
48.9% Snow
46.8% SBOE
40.0% Trump
35.9% Smith
35.7% Heppler
Oshtemo Township official candidates:
42% Nieuwenhuis
43% Solarek
40% Zondervan
49.3% Carr
44% Corakis
42% Lefler
42% Clem
Federal Judge Gershwin Drain extended straight ticket voting in Michigan after the legislature passed a law to eliminate it.  After the election, some observers claimed that straight ticket voting benefited Republicans since in some counties (e.g. Macomb) more Republicans voted straight ticket.
However, we don’t know what people would have done in its absence.  In Kalamazoo, more democrats voted straight ticket (33218) than Republicans (25159).  The following map shows which party had more straight ticket voters in each precinct.
Previous Post Next Post


  • Republican Michigander January 11, 2017 at 10:32 am

    I like Western, so I’m not taking a shot at WMU here, but what shocked me was Isabella County (home of CMU) going for Trump. Mt Pleasant didn’t go for Trump, but the surrounding area there all moved right.

    Granted, Kalamazoo County has the north side of Kalamazoo, but the outskirts of the county are usually much more R leaning in Kalamazoo County than Isabella County.

    MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

    • twinpines January 11, 2017 at 11:24 am

      The outskirts of kalamazoo county are more suburban rather then working class rural.

      MI SD-38, Conservative Independent, not associated with either party.

  • rdelbov January 12, 2017 at 7:47 pm

    A bit amazing we have a GOP state senator from this county at least until 2018

    • Red Oaks January 12, 2017 at 9:20 pm

      Margaret O’Brien has a pretty good chance of holding on in 2018 due to incumbency. In 2014 ironically the presence of an unusual Libertarian candidate probably helped her win. Come 2022 it will be hard to keep that seat as most likely all of Kalamazoo county will be its own district again based on population trends.

      MI-03: Tired of Presidency; Focused more on downballot races; Chris Afendoulis for State Senate

    Leave a Reply

    Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!