Decision 2015: Early Voting “Half Time Report”

Three days of early voting have occurred for the October 24, 2015 primary (early voting ends this Saturday). What have the numbers cumulatively told us ?

(1) Slowdown in activity: As of yesterday, 88,184 early voted or mailed in their ballot. This is 8% less than the early voting volume after three days of early voting for the November 2014 primary, when 96,126 early/absentee voted;

(2) Lessened Democratic intensity:  On the first day, the racial composition of those who early voted was 69-29% white/black; as of last night, it was 72-26% white/black. In other words, the early voting electorate from Monday/Tuesday was only 24% black. Similarly, there has been an uptick in GOP early voting: it was 52-34% Democrat/Republican Saturday, and is now 51-35% Republican. In other words, the Monday/Tuesday early vote was 50-36% Democrat/Republican.

What do the early voting numbers tell us about projected voter turnout ? Given that the trajectory of turnout has slowed down since Saturday relative to previous election cycles, what was a predicted turnout of 46-58% has now been revised to 42-54% (for the sake of context, October 2011 turnout was 37%, while it was 52% in the November 2014 primary.)