For the first time in modern Louisiana history, voters registered as Democrats now comprise a minority of all registered voters thanks to surge recent years in Republican and especially in “no party” registrations.

According to the Associated Press, Dem registration has fallen below 50 percent for the first time since 1957 when the state began tracking voter registration by party. But the pace of the Dems’ demise is astonishing: 90 percent of registered voters had a “D” after their names in 1978. The party now accounts for 49.8 percent of the state’s 2.8 million registered voters.

A spokeswoman for the Louisiana Democratic Party, while not disputing the numbers, tells the AP that a large number of voters not affiliated with either major party continue to vote Democrat, although the party’s recent fortunes at the ballot box tend to dispute that claim.

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