Phoenix, AZ (October 31st, 2022) As we begin the third full week of early voting in Arizona, we wanted to give you an update on where things stand! As expected, overall turnout is down from the record highs of the 2020 Presidential Election. However, we are also seeing lower turnout compared to the 2018 election because of much lower returns from Republican voters. With 12 days left to go (the most recent date complete data is available at this time), Arizona voters have submitted 783,439 early ballots. At this point in 2018, 837,861 ballots had been cast. That’s a decrease of 6.5%.
This decrease in turnout does favor Republicans, for a number of reasons, though.
Republican voters used to dominate early voting in the State of Arizona but those voting patterns began to change after the 2020 General Election. As we saw in the 2022 primary election, Republicans are much more likely to either return their ballots in the last week or vote in person on election day.
With Republican turnout expected to surge as we get closer to election day, most would expect the Democrats to have a major advantage at this point in the election, much as they did in 2020. However, this is not the case. Statewide, Democrats hold a narrow 3.3% ballot return advantage. If voting patterns shift in the final week as expected, Democrats could go into Election Day with a ballot disadvantage and have to rely even more heavily on Independent voters to go their way for their candidates to win.
To put Election Day into perspective, there are 160,000 more Republican voters who did not request an early ballot than Democrat voters. Of that 160,000 voter advantage, nearly 110,000 have voted in at least two out of the last four General Elections. That means there are significantly more likely Republican voters that can vote on Election Day than there are likely Democrat voters.
One other major factor in deciding this race could be the surprisingly low turnout of low-efficacy voters. Turnout for 0/4 voters is down more than 70% from 2018 and 86% from 2020. Likewise, 1/4 voter turnout is down 47% from 2018 and 67% from 2020. If these patterns hold, this election will come down to which party can energize its base and get them out down the stretch.
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