Saturday, October 29, 2016

More early voting analysis

Whopper, supersized.

Harris County residents cast more ballots in the first four days of early voting than five states did in the entire 2012 presidential election.

Locally, the number of ballots cast over those days was 45 percent higher than the same period four years ago. Other parts of the state, which sported the nation's lowest turnout in 2014, have seen similar growth.


In the 15 most populous Texas counties, turnout in the first three days of early voting equaled one-third of total turnout in 2012, said Derek Ryan, an Austin-based Republican data consultant. In some less populous counties, he said, polling places have been "just completely swamped, they aren't used to seeing this many people show up to vote."

And it's not just Texas.

"We're seeing reports of record turnout for this point in time across the country," said Michael McDonald, director of the United States Elections Project. "You (Texas) are really off the scale compared to the other states."

I got the following off the (Democrats') Senate District 17 Facebook page, posted there by their chairman, Tom Gederberg.

Updated Harris County Early Voting and Mail Ballot Results for Friday

So far 374,679 people early voted in Harris County (and each days number was greater than the previous day: 67,471 on Monday, 73,542 on Tuesday, 76,098 on Wednesday, 76,329 on Thursday, and 81,239 on Friday) and 77,445 people have so far turned turned in a mail ballot!

There is a slight lag in getting the data loaded into VAN. So far, VAN has data on 276,292 early voters and on 63,293 mail voters. If you assume that people who have a 2016 DNC Dem Party Support v2 score of over 50% is a likely Democrat and those with a score under 50% is a likely Republican, here is how the voting looks in Harris County so far:
VAN Early Total: 276,292
Likely Democrat: 150,530 (54.48%)
Likely Republican: 125,762 (45.52%)
VAN Mail Total: 63,293
Likely Democrat: 35,063 (55.40%)
Likely Republican: 28,230 (44.60%)

One note of caution. Our percentages have gone down from yesterday. Yesterday, our early vote percentage was 56.47% and our mail vote percentage was 56.26%. Also, these percentages are only as good as the 2016 DNC Dem Party Support scores in VAN.

I am disinclined to believe that Friday's development w/r/t Hillary's latest email thing is going to influence a measurable amount of those who have not yet voted.  This is not the October Surprise some have been waiting for, and even if it were, I simply don't think it will sway many people.  The Democrats I know have demonstrated a remarkable ability to ignore, minimize, or give credence to her many scandals, flaws, foibles, and policies that are anathema to progress.  They have applied their own coat of Teflon to Madam President, and I do not expect their beliefs are going to change very much over the next ten days ... or even the next four years.

Back to the turnout: the EV numbers have indeed been increasing every day, and today's total will be the highest perhaps seen for the period.  With more data and more granular analysis, the easier it becomes to divine a wave election.

"The first four days looked pretty good for local Democrats," said (UH's Dr. Richard) Murray, who has studied Harris County voting patterns since 1966. "More female, more ethnic, less Caucasian."

The county's turnout so far has been 57 percent female, Murray said, compared with the typical 54 percent, which he called "probably something of a Trump effect."

Stephen Klineberg, founder of Rice University's Kinder Institute for Urban Research, said the county's Democratic shift was a long time coming.

He pointed to a 2016 study by the Institute, which showed Harris County had been evenly split between Democrats and Republicans since studies began in 1984.

In 2005, 35 percent of respondents identified as Democrat and 37 percent identified as Republican. In 2016, 52 percent identified as Democrat and 30 percent as Republican.

That change was mostly due to population growth and changing party affiliation among Latinos, who make up 51 percent of the population under 20 in Harris County, he said.

"Pundits have been predicting this for years," Klineberg said. "There are some indications that we are beginning to see signs of that inevitable transformation in this election year, earlier than most pundits expected."

Let's hope all these Democrats are NOT voting straight-tickets.  Too many lousy statewide judicials that don't deserve a single vote, after all.  More at the Chron's link, and more later as the numbers come in from over the weekend.

No comments: