‘Initial ballot returns could spell trouble for Democrats hoping for a wave that goes their direction…’
(Quin Hillyer, Liberty Headlines) While trends in early voting don’t always correlate with election outcomes, Republicans in many places in the country are happy to see reports of advantages in pre-Election Day balloting this year.
As reported by Adam Edelman at NBC News, “Republican-affiliated voters have outpaced Democratic-affiliated voters in early voting in seven closely watched states, according to data provided by TargetSmart and independently analyzed by the NBC News Data Analytics Lab.”
Republican-affiliated voters led in early voting turnout over Democratic ones by 44-38 percent in Florida, by 51 to 39 percent in Indiana, by 46-29 percent in Montana, 63-30 percent in Tennessee, 53-43 in Texas, and 52-43 percent in Georgia. (In all cases, the remaining voters had no clear party affiliation.)
Only in Nevada, of the seven states analyzed, did Democrats enjoy an early vote advantage, but incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Dean Heller maintains a slim 1.7 percent average lead in polling there.
Separately, the Sacramento Bee reported that even in heavily Democratic California, “initial ballot returns could spell trouble for Democrats hoping for a wave that goes their direction.” In particular, early turnout among Democratic-leaning Latino and Asian populations is described as “underwhelming.”
And in one more state, North Carolina, unusually heavy early results also look quite good for Republicans.
There is no U.S. Senate race in North Carolina this year, but two House races there are considered at or near the “toss-up” range.
In the 13th Congressional District, incumbent Republican Ted Budd narrowly leads Democrat Kathy Manning in recent polls, and in the 9th district (now held by Republican Robert Pittenger), Republican Mark Harris has traded polling leads with Democrat Dan McCready.
Harris, Budd, and other Tarheel State Republicans right now take heart that early Republican turnout is up 44 percent from the 2014 mid-terms, while registered Democratic turnout is up by a lesser 26 percent margin.
And whites, seen as more likely to vote conservative, have increased early turnout by 52 percent, while black turnout, usually seen as liberal, is up only 9 percent from 2014.
President Trump is scheduled to campaign in Charlotte Friday night, hoping to juice up conservative enthusiasm even more.