Tuesday marked the end of the presidential primary season. A total of 39 states held presidential primaries for at least one major party nomination. Despite its prime position early in the primary season, turnout in Texas ranked 29th of the 39 states. Texas finished behind one state that had a Republican primary only.
Four of the states ranking behind Texas – California, Kentucky (Democratic presidential primary only), Nebraska and New Jersey – held primaries after Donald Trump was the last candidate remaining in the Republican race.
Turnout is calculated as the number of votes cast in the Democratic and Republican presidential primaries divided by the total number of registered voters in the state. Actual turnout in several states could be slightly higher. Voters who cast ballots for other parties’ candidates were excluded. Parties in about half of these states have “closed primary” rules requiring voters to be registered Democrats or Republicans in order to vote in the primary, so unaffiliated voters were either unable to vote at all or cast ballots in other races.
Twelve of the 15 highest turnout states have “open” primaries enabling any registered voter to choose a (presidential) primary and cast a ballot. Texas was last in turnout among open-primary states. All 10 states ranking below Texas have some form of closed primary.