In an election with record-breaking voter registration in Philadelphia and the most ballots cast nationwide in U.S. history — Kensington managed to increase voter turnout and help highlight campaign strategy flaws among the Democratic Party.
Wards 7, 19, 25, 31, 33, and 45 — the city’s political wards that enclose the Kensington, Fairhill, and Harrowgate neighborhoods — recorded 46,585 total votes in the 2020 presidential race, a few hundred more than in the 2016 general election, according to election data from the Office of the Philadelphia City Commissioners.
The data also showed that over half of registered voters in those wards participated in the election, at an average of 57% voter turnout. A majority of votes swung towards President-elect Joe Biden who won 72% of the Kensington-area wards. President Donald Trump followed with 27%, and Jo Jorgensen received less than 1% of the total votes in those wards.
A drop in Democratic Party votes
Historically, Philadelphia has swayed democratic in elections. However, during the 2020 general election, the Kensington and Fairhill neighborhoods were areas with “the biggest drops in Democratic votes for president.” According to The Philadelphia Inquirer, the possible reasons for this result vary, such as a lack of campaigning in areas like Fairhill where the Hispanic or Latinx populations account for 83% of the neighborhood’s residents.
“Every time [Democrats] want votes, they look to Latinos, but when they get our vote, they push us aside,” Fairhill resident Miguel Roman told Kensington Voice on Election Day. “That’s one of the reasons I don’t want to vote for Joe Biden.”
According to The Philadelphia Inquirer, even though Biden won the Kensington and Fairhill areas — receiving on average more than half of each precinct’s votes — he received fewer votes than Hillary Clinton did in 2016. On the other side, Trump doubled the number of votes he received from those neighborhoods in 2016.
Election results for Kensington
In both East Kensington’s 31-08 precinct and Fairhill’s 7-05 precinct, Biden won over 80% of votes. In precincts where Trump won, like Bridesburg’s 45-03 and Port Richmond’s 45-24, he won 66% and 55% of the precincts’ votes, respectively.
Philadelphia’s 2020 general election was met with new challenges: due to the coronavirus pandemic, more than half of city voters chose to mail-in their ballot; the city was a national focus of President Trump’s voter fraud allegations; and Philadelphia county election board officials defended the election results in federal court.
Through all of the obstacles, Kensington got the vote out and helped secure the Biden campaign a win among the River Wards, according to Star News Philly.
Find your precinct
To find which precinct you live in, you can check out the city’s map tool. Using the filter side menu, choose “Political Ward Divisions,” and then type your address in the search bar — the map will bring you to your address. Click on the map marker for your address, and you’ll see your four-digit precinct number. The first two numbers are your political ward, and the second two numbers are your division. (Ex: 2100 Hancock Street falls into precinct 1912, or Ward 19, Division 12.)
To see how your precinct voted in the 2020 presidential race, check out the map below.
Editors: Zari Tarazona, Claire Wolters / Designer: Henry Savage
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