November 4, 2016

Early voting blows past 2008, 2012 totals

Early voting numbers have already exceeded total early votes cast in New Mexico during the 2008 and 2012 elections, according to the latest numbers from the Secretary of State’s office.

A total of 376,088 voters cast early in-person votes through the close of polls Thursday, 28,929 more than in 2008 and 1,514 more than in 2012. Early voting closes Saturday.

A total of 52,639 voters have returned absentee ballots, bringing the total ballots cast up to 428,727—just under 33 percent vote turnout even before election day.

The number of absentee ballots cast is well off the pace from 2008 and 2012 levels. In 2008, 172,136 voters cast absentee ballots, while in 2012 88,848 cast ballots by absentee. In 2016, just 69,445 voters have even requested absentee ballots so far. The deadline to request an absentee ballot is 5 p.m. today.

Dem percentage continues to slip statewide

The percentage of Democrats voting continues to slide under 50 percent, but still runs ahead of their share of the voter registration, and more Democrats have cast ballots than Republicans in each day of early voting.

Of the 428,727 votes cast, counting both returned absentee ballots and votes cast early and in-person, 211,996 (49.45 percent) are from Democrats, while 154,869 (36.12 percent) are from Republicans and 61,862 (14.43 percent) are from members of either a third party or no party.

On the first day of expanded early voting on Oct. 22, Democrats made up 55.98 percent of all votes, Republicans 31.48 percent and members of neither party 12.54 percent.

Democrats make up more than 50 percent of votes already cast in the state’s two largest counties. In Bernalillo County, 51.15 percent of all votes cast so far have been by Democrats, 33.39 percent by Republicans and 15.46 percent by members of neither party.

In Dona Ana County, 50.71 percent of all votes cast have been by Democrats, 32.44 percent have been by Republicans and 16.84 percent by members of neither party.

These two counties are home to the bulk of high-profile state legislative races.

Los Alamos County has highest turnout so far, with 45.88 percent of all registered voters already casting ballots mostly through early voting. While absentee voting is down big from 2008 and 2012 in the county, early voting is at 131.36 percent of the 2012 number and 105.4 percent of the 2008 total. Los Alamos County is home to a high-profile state House of Representatives race in District 43, where incumbent Democrat Stephanie Garcia Richard is taking on Republican Sharon Stover.

Two other counties already have 40 percent of voters who have cast ballots: Santa Fe County (41.48 percent) and Sandoval County (40.77 percent). These two counties also have high profile state Senate races.