Select Page

Early voting for the March 6 primary election continues until March 2. Day Two turnout typically falls from Day One. One of the biggest drivers is how mail ballots are counted. Day One includes all mail ballots received up to and including that day. Every subsequent day includes only those ballots by mail received on that day.

The key story for Day Two is whether in-person voting sustains the Day One pace. Early evidence suggests it did not:

  • Harris Co: Day Two in-person turnout fell 14% from Tuesday. During the first two days of early voting, 14,493 Republicans and 12,627 Democrats have voted in person or by mail. Compared to 2014, Republican two-day turnout is down 3% from 2014 and Democratic turnout is up 79%.
  • Tarrant Co.: About a third fewer people voted in person during the second day of early voting compared to the first day. During the first two days of early voting, 8,292 Republicans and 6,535 Democrats have voted in person or by mail. Compared to 2014, Republican two-day turnout is down 25% and Democratic turnout is up 38%.
  • Bexar Co.: Day Two in-person turnout fell 18% from Tuesday. The number of in-person Republican primary voters fell 8%, while Democratic turnout fell 25%.
  • Travis Co.: Day Two in-person turnout fell 7% from Tuesday. During the first two days of early voting, 3,025 Republicans and 8,379 Democrats have voted in person or by mail. Compared to 2014, Republican turnout is up 41% and Democratic turnout is up 97%.
  • Denton Co.: Day Two in-person turnout fell 31% from Tuesday. During the first two days of early voting, 3,773 Republicans and 1,826 Democrats have voted in person or by mail. Compared to 2014, Republican two-day turnout is down 18% and Democratic turnout is up 197%.
  • Hidalgo Co.: Day Two in-person turnout fell 15% from Tuesday. During the first two days of early voting, 891 Republicans and 8,782 Democrats have voted in person or by mail. Compared to 2014, Republican two-day turnout is up 2% and Democratic turnout is up 14%.

Our gut reaction to the Republican numbers yesterday was to doubt that significant numbers of crossover voters were casting ballots in that primary. Republican political consultant Derek Ryan today provided us with his analysis of the voting history (PDF) of Day One Republican primary voters that largely confirms a lack of crossover voting:

  • 92% voted in a previous Republican primary, a sliver of which also voted in a previous Democratic primary
  • 2% voted in a previous Democratic primary, but had no Republican primary history
  • 6% voted in a general election but had no primary history; and
  • 1% have no prior voting history.

Ryan’s analysis looks at 16 counties, including several that are not among the 15 counties from which the Secretary of State collects daily reports. He is a former research director of the Republican Party of Texas.

Pre-primary reports are due tomorrow for federal candidates on the March 6 primary ballot. These reports include contributions received and expenditures made between January 1 and February 14. The candidates are required to file 48-hour notices for contributions received after the 14th.

LAND: The campaign of former Comm. Jerry Patterson (R) released a trio of radio ads focusing on the Alamo, Hurricane Harvey and a radio show interview.

HD62 open: Texans for Lawsuit Reform endorsed Reggie Smith for the seat being vacated by Rep. Larry Phillips (R-Sherman).

HD99: The Texas Tribune’s Jay Root reported that the Travis Co. District Attorney’s office is reviewing a complaint lodged by a Tarrant Co. voter against that mail piece we highlighted the other day. The mail piece is designed to look like a government-issued notice from the Texas Ethics Disclosure Board, which is actually an assumed name of Empower Texans.

CD16 open: U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-El Paso) stars in a new ad for Veronica Escobar, who he has endorsed.

©2018 Texas Election Source LLC