November 5, 2018

New Mexico’s record-shattering early voting, by the numbers

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More people cast ballots by the end of early voting than ever before in a New Mexico midterm election.

Between early and absentee ballots, the Secretary of State reported 430,796 votes by the end of early in-person voting on Saturday. That’s thirty percent more than in 2010.

NM Political Report dug into the numbers provided by the Secretary of State,and just a reminder that absentee numbers can still increase, as any ballots returned before close of polls on Election Day will be counted.

0.56: Percent of voters who cast ballots who are registered Libertarians.

In the Libertarian Party’s first election as a major party, they so far make up 0.56 percent of early and absentee voters. The party’s members make up 0.7 percent of the state’s total registered voters.

1: Number of counties in which more voters cast their ballots early than turned out in total in 2016.

Guadalupe County in  east-central New Mexico county  had 27 more early and absentee votes so far this election than it did in 2016—a presidential year.

2: Elections in which early in-person and absentee ballots made up more than 60 percent of total turnout.

In 2008, 62.3 percent of voters cast ballots early or absentee, while in 2016 64.9 percent of voters did so. In 2012, 58.9 percent did so. It appears likely, barring an unprecedented midterm turnout, 2018 will be the first midterm election to cross the 60 percent barrier.

3: Number of counties with higher early and absentee turnout in 2010 than 2018.

The only three counties with more votes cast early and absentee in 2010 than 2018 were Guadalupe, Harding and Mora counties.

4: Number of counties already 80 percent of the way to 2010’s total amount of votes.

Not just the early and absentee number (they’re all well over that), but the total numbers including Election Day. The counties are Sandoval, Bernalillo, Santa Fe and Los Alamos.

7: Number of counties already 80 percent of the way to 2014’s total amount of votes.

2014 was a very bad year for turnout in New Mexico. Still, Bernalillo (99.09 percent), Sandoval (93.17 percent), Santa Fe (89.4 percent), Los Alamos (88.19 percent), Doña Ana (86.53 percent), Grant (82.47 percent) and Taos (81.45 percent) are well on their way to eclipsing that year’s total turnout.

13.5: Percent of registered voters who cast ballots early or absentee in McKinley County.

Frequently among the counties with the lowest turnout, McKinley County this year so far has i the lowest turnout. It’s also a county where more voters tend to show up on Election Day than in nearly voting.

39.32: Percent of statewide votes cast in Bernalillo County, the state’s most-populous.

Susana Martinez won Bernalillo County in 2010 en route to her relatively easy victory over Diane Denish, but can Steve Pearce repeat the trick?

49, 51.1: Percent of total votes cast early/absentee statewide in 2010 and 2014.

Early voting in the last two midterms was around 50 percent. If it is similar to that number, it would mean over 850,000 voters—above even presidential turnout. Total turnout will likely be lower than that this year, meaning more voters will have cast ballots before Election Day rather than on the day itself.

50.12: Percent of registered Los Alamos voters who have already voted.

Los Alamos is a highly educated, small county. And it’s also the county that consistently has the highest election turnout. It was the only district  to crack the 50 percent turnout mark by the end of early voting.

51.79: Percent of voters so far who are Democrats.

The number will likely drop on Election Day, but the early and absentee voting is more Democratic than it was in 2016—a presidential year that ended up being good for the Democrats in the state even as Donald Trump won the presidency.

56,169: Number of absentee ballots cast through Nov. 3.

Absentee voting has fallen out of favor as the state made early voting easier and easier for voters. More absentee votes can come in, through Election Day, but as it stands, that’s just 13 percent of the votes cast so far.

78,203: Number of Election Day ballots needed to match 2014’s turnout percentage.

To match 2010’s 40.35 percent voter turnout among registered voters, not even 80,000 more voters will need to cast ballots on Election Day.

234,119: Number of Election Day ballots needed to match 2010’s turnout percentage.

To match 2014’s 52.71 percent voter turnout among registered voters, nearly a quarter million more New Mexico voters will need to vote on Election Day.