Rural Voters

Since 2004 the Center for Rural Strategies has produced the Rural Tracker, a national nonpartisan poll of rural voters in battleground states. The poll is deisgned to show how the opinions of rural voters help shape presidential and congressional races.

In recent elections, rural voters have been decisive. When Republican candidates run up big margins among rural voters, they win national elections. When Democrats decrease the Republican lead in rural areas, Democrats tend to win elections. These trends held true in the 2004 and 2008 presidential elections and in the 2006 midterm election for House and Senate.

Partners in the Rural Tracker have included the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the Carnegie Foundation of New York, and the National Rural Assembly. The polls have been reported on NPR and other national and regional outlets.

Rural Tracker

The Rural Tracker, a poll of rural voters in battleground states, is a project of the Center for Rural Strategies, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization.


Rural Tracker 2004, 2006, 2008


Bush increases lead in rural battleground

Rural splits evenly between GOP, Dems 

Bush leads Kerry by 12 points in rural battleground



The Election, State by State -- Rural voters in the 2008 presidential election

Obama's Iowa Campaign -- A family newspaper offered the best seat in the house for viewing the 2008 election.

Counties that Flipped -- 375 counties voted for one party in the 2004 presidential election and a different party this year. The Yonder is keeping a list.


Rural Strategies and the National Rural Assembly commissioned three nonpartisan polls of rural voters during the 2008 presidential election season.

Rural battleground moved toward Obama during October (October 1-21, 2008)

McCain leads by 10 in rural battleground (September 16-18, 2008)

McCain leads Obama by 9 in rural battleground (May 13-15, 2008)



More on 2012 Rural Vote

Romney Up By 14 In Rural Swing States

2012 Presidential Election