Research states US expats in UK could hold deciding vote in US election

Published:  20 Oct at 6 PM
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Tagged: USA, UK, Canada, England
A scholarly paper recently issued by a US institute based at Oxford University revealed US expat voters in Britain could hold the key to the result of the US presidential election.

The research paper, entitled ‘America’s Overseas Voters: how they could decide the US presidency in 2016’, stresses the power of overseas voters in the most controversial US presidential election for decades. Of the eight million Americans living overseas, it states, the UK hosts around a quarter of a million, all of whom could be a part of affecting the results in some US states.

Director of the Rothermere American Institute Dr Halbert Jones explained that the present situation as regards US expat voters isn’t unique, as overseas voters have decided the outcome of previous presidential elections. Should the number of US expats who decide to vote show a significant increase, it’s likely to have a strong effect on the results, he added.

In the 2000 election, it was overseas votes which delivered the state of Florida and the election result itself to George W Bush. The election was tight at both national and state levels, with expat votes tipping the balance. In the present scenario, just a few thousand overseas votes could make a huge difference to the outcome.

The report’s analysis of competitive states including North Caroline, Nevada and Ohio showed the balance in all three states able to be tipped by overseas voters. Should Trump’s popularity continue to wane, votes from abroad could make a difference in the Arizona, Iowa and Georgia swing states. However, neither Trump nor Clinton have paid much attention during their campaigns to expat voters, in spite of Republican and Democrat overseas organisations’ attempts to mobilise supporters across the world.

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