Early voting on Saturday surpassed the corresponding Saturday in 2016 and exceeded the last three gubernatorial elections’ Saturdays combined in the 15 counties with the most registered voters. It was the highest Saturday vote total ever for early voting in those counties, and likely in the state as a whole.
Turnout on Sunday is historically the lowest of any day during the early voting period. Many counties have reduced hours and/or polling places, and many smaller counties do not offer early voting on Sunday.
Through six days (Monday through Saturday), almost 2.4M people have voted early in person or by mail, a 183% increase over the same six days in 2014 and a 38% increase over the total for the entire early voting period that year. With six days to go, including Sunday, total votes cast in the 15 counties is just over 52% the number case early in 2016.
More than 2.8M votes have been cast in the 30 counties with the most registered voters, corresponding to 23% of registered voters. In all of 2014, including Election Day, turnout statewide was 33.7%. In 2014, just under 3.6M votes were cast in the 30 counties, including votes cast on Election Day.
So far in the 30 counties, the number of early voters represents 78% of the total number of voters in 2014, including Election Day. Leading the way is El Paso Co. where early turnout has already exceeded the total number of votes cast in 2014 including Election Day.
As for Sunday, turnout has followed the general trajectory of the 2016 election. In Harris Co., nearly 38K people voted, quadruple the 2014 Sunday turnout and just behind 2016. Likewise for Tarrant Co., where 16K people voted, just a bit behind 2016 and more than triple 2014. In Bexar Co., nearly 15K voted, more than triple the 2014 turnout but about 3K below 2016.
In Montgomery Co., just over 5K people voted, which is more than five times the number who voted in 2014 but over 1K fewer than in 2016. Williamson Co. saw just over 5K voters today, nearly quadruple the 2014 count but a little below 2016.
Early voting continues through Friday. A number of counties, including Harris Co., will keep the polls open longer each day this week. The last day of early voting is historically the biggest in terms of turnout.
Meanwhile, state and legislative candidates on the general election ballot are required to submit their 8-day-out campaign finance reports tomorrow (Monday). These reports include contributions received and expenditures made between September 28 and October 27 and are often more instructive than federal pre-general reports, which only cover 17 days. The Texas Ethics Commission typically makes these 8-day-out reports available online sometime Tuesday, at which time we will update our Crib Sheets and analyze the numbers via our “Breaking News” alerts.
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