Here are the totals from Wednesday (October 23). For a listing of all early voting locations countywide and their hours of operation, click here.
So far, 27,628 people have voted in person or by mail. That compares to 11,280 through three days in 2011, 15,192 through three days in 2009, and 8,278 through three days in 2007.
Charles has covered this already, and these are significant increases in early voting numbers for a municipal election. Both EVIP and mailed ballots are about two times what they were two years ago, and similarly above recent municipal cycles.
For an election season fairly devoid of significant developments (at least for me), this is impressive. Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart thinks it's due to the extra attention the photo ID requirement received from the media.
"I also believe this campaign to notify people to bring their photo ID to the polls has actually raised the public awareness that there's an election."
That's as good a reason as any. I cast my ballot Tuesday at one of the city's heaviest boxes, the Fiesta on Kirby, and there was no waiting. Pundits will try to divine some meaning from this data, but I'm comfortable watching the trend play out a bit more before hazarding a guess. I will say that it does not look like a red wave election at this early point.
In the meantime, do your civic duty (and make sure you have your ID on you when you do).
Update (10/25): Day 4 totals are highest yet...
The top four early-voting locations have been consistent (though swapping positions) through four days: Metropolitan Multi-Service Center on West Gray (478 in-person voters), followed by Trini Mendenhall Sosa Community Center in the Spring Branch area (325), Bayland Park Community Center in southwest Houston (321), and the Fiesta Mart at Kirby and the South Loop (301).
So far, 34,415 people have voted in person or by mail. That compares to 14,641 through four days in 2011, 18,578 through four days in 2009, and 11,206 through four days in 2007.