Skip to comments.Who's Really Winning Early Voting? (Hint: Not Obama!)
Posted on 11/02/2012 8:44:25 AM PDT by TonyInOhio
With both parties spinning early-vote totals, here's the bottom line: Republicans are significantly improving on 2008 in several big early-voting states.
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The blizzard of numbers, of claims and counterclaims, can be so daunting it's tempting to just throw up your hands and decide there's no truth to be had, just spin. But an objective analysis of early turnout can provide valuable tea leaves for Election Day. In many states, election officials disclose how many Democrats and Republicans have voted thus far. We don't know who they're voting for, but in most states, this alignment is a good proxy for the candidates. (Then there's the mystery of those voters who aren't affiliated with a party. In polls, independent voters have generally favored Romney, leading his campaign to claim an edge in this category, but for the purposes of analyzing early voting it's impossible to tell.) It's important to consider which party has historically had the early vote advantage -- Democrats, in most states -- and whether early voting makes up a substantial amount of the vote, which varies from state to state.
In 2010, I looked at early voting in 20 states and found early signs of the disproportionate Republican turnout that would define the Tea Party wave. This year, the picture is more mixed, befitting the sort of non-wave election most are expecting. It should shock no one that signs point to a significant dropoff from 2008 for Obama; if Election Day trends hold, he seems likely to lose a handful of states he won four years ago. In particular, the early vote looks promising for Republicans in North Carolina, Florida and Colorado. But early voting in Iowa, Nevada, and (though it's tricky to assess) Ohio still looks strong enough for Democrats.
(Excerpt) Read more at theatlantic.com ...
She's way off on Ohio, though - her analysis relies on voting by precinct, but what she misses is that the 2008 precincts were all changed after redistricting in 2010 - they are not comparable. Counties, however are exactly the same, and counties that McCain carried are turning out in the early vote at higher rates than those Obama won.
Obama won Ohio by roughly 260,000 votes in 2008, but his advantage there is only about 15,000 now. If we turnout our Election Day vote (and we will!), Romney wins 51-49.
The big rally in Ohio tonight should help too.
I’m in Texas so of course I won’t be there.
Question for you though.
How does the political landscape look now compared to 2004?
That’s what has me curious.
And I’m not talking numbers but mood, yard signs, crowd sizes etc.
Drove past the early voting location, the county annex, at about 3 pm yesterday and there were more than a hundred folks in line outside of the building. I am not sure how long the line was inside the building, but there is a rather large atrium. The people in line were about 95% white. In 2008, the early voting lines were also outside the door, but the line was 95% black.
I don't know who the white folk voted for, but by polling numbers, 90%+ of blacks are likely to vote for Obama. So a much smaller early voting turnout of black voters would be bad for Obama and good for America.
What’s the ground game like out there? I know that in Tidewater VA we will be knocking on every known Republicqan door between now and Tuesday and the phones will be working overtime. It’s amazing how many people, of all ages are turning out to knock on doors. I’ve never seen a GOTV effort that’s this well organized. Very impressive.
But Geraghty also found that the Ds were cannibalizing their "high propensity voters" (just as they are here in OH) to vote early, skewing the early voting numbers. In other words, looks like we should get a win in IA.
Tony - Have you looked at the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections Absentee Labels spreadsheets? I may be wrong, but they seem to pick up both absentee and early voting results.
The 2008 file appears to show that in 2008 about 34,000 Republicans voted absentee or early in Cuyahoga County. If I read it correctly, the current file for 2012 shows that about 41,000 Republicans have voted early or absentee in Cuyahoga County so far for the 2012 election. While this is good news, it may need to be taken with a grain of salt because there may be “Republicans” supporting Josh Mandel in Cuyahoga County that will not vote for Romney or other Republicans. In any event, it is good news if the combination of Cuyahoga County’s total early and absentee voting is apparently lagging the pace from 2008 and Republican numbers apparently are already ahead of their total 2008 early and absentee vote count.
Solid turnout on election day can send President Obama back to Hawaii.
It is just tremendous - the campaign and GOP has made more contacts, calls, and door knocks than 2004 and 2008 combined. From personal experience, I can attest that we've never seen rallies the size of Romney's in my part of Ohio. WE ARE FIRED UP!
Glad to hear about your area of Virginia. I’m in VA too (south of Roanoke). However, I’m disappointed in a couple things here. One, we have 4 voting adults in the household (all for Mitt), and no one has ever called us by phone or come by in person (not that it would make a difference, but how would they know?). Second, we’ve heard some radio ads against Obama (by the Coalition for Coal or those kinds of organizations, but nothing by the Romney campaign. But we get a lot of Obama for America/authorized by Barack Obama type ads on radio (yesterday and today it was the one with Kal Penn). This was concerning 4 years ago where we found virtually nothing on radio by McCain (we’re a trapped audience in the car, vs TV which I think is less effective).
McCain didn't lose because of early voting, he lost because Obama had more votes-period!
I know your point, but while Obama still would have won in 08, it would have been very close in a lot of states without early voting because these are not, as they say, "high propensity voters."
Ultimately however if the GOP turnout is high enough it will beat the Democrat EV.
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