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Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Final on Early Voting in the GA Sixth District

Early voting is now over in the sixth district of Georgia special election.  There were over 140,000 votes cast.  Compared to early voting in 2016, that's over 40,000 fewer votes, but it's a very high number for a special election.  We don't know how the vote split, but we do know who voted.  First, even with about 23% fewer votes cast than in 2016, the number of Republicans who voted was higher than the number of Democrats who voted by a larger margin than in 2016.  This is a very good sign for the GOP candidate.  Second, the age mix of those who voted early this year was not very different from the last election with one major exception:  the number of young voters (under 30) who cast a ballot decreased dramatically as a percentage of all the votes.  Third, the biggest group of those voting were neither Democrats or Republicans.  This was true in 2016 as well.  Last, the number of women voting was higher than the number of men, but the margin for women was much lower than it was in 2016.

Taken together, it would seem that the early voters in this special election are more likely to vote Republican than the early voters in 2016.  In 2016, Donald Trump carried the district by just 1% over Hillary Clinton.  In that same election, the GOP candidate for Congress, Dr. Tom Price (who left to become secretary of HHS) won by about 20% over his Democrat opponent.

After election day brings the rest of the vote, it may or may not be that the wave of opposition to President Trump which the Democrats keep trumpeting will materialize.  We will have to wait and see.  We already know, however, that the early voting did not see any evidence of the Trump opposition bringing people to the polls.

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