Nearly 100 million Americans voted before polls open on Tuesday

Early voting set records in Florida, Georgia, US

Residents stand in line to vote in Yonkers, N.Y. (Julie Jacobson, Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

On the eve of Election Day, 99 million Americans had already cast ballots. That’s more than two-thirds of all votes cast in the 2016 presidential election. in Florida and Georgia, 93% of their total 2016 turnout had cast ballots, based on Monday data from the two states.

Tens of millions more are expected to vote Tuesday.

By Tuesday morning, nearly 64 million mail ballots have been received by elections officials and 35 million have voted in person. That’s 63% of the potential voters in the United States and 72% of the number of votes cast in 2016.

Nearly 9 million Floridians voted in advance, following only Texas and California for the most early votes. Texas actually had more votes cast this year than its total number in any previous election.

The massive early voting numbers suggest a high level of enthusiasm for voting this year despite the obstacles of a pandemic.

Democrats dominated the initial balloting, but Republicans are narrowing the gap. GOP voters have begun to show up at early in-person voting, a sign that many heeded President Donald Trump’s unfounded warnings about mail-voting fraud.

Two weeks ago, Democrats registrants had cast 51% of all ballots reported, compared with 25% from Republicans. By Saturday, Democrats lead had slipped to 45% to the GOP’s 30% of the vote as in-person votes begin to make up a bigger share of the turnout than mail ballots. About 24% of the votes so far come from voters not affiliated with either party.

The advance vote totals are an imperfect indicator of whether President Donald Trump or Vice President Joe Biden may have more votes at this point. The data only shows party registration, not which candidate voters support.

Ballots submitted or voted in states that have already opened in-person early voting represent nearly 68% of all the votes cast in the 2016 presidential election, according to the United States Election Project. The project’s data show Georgia’s turnout so far is 93% of all votes that were cast in 2016 and Florida also at 93% of all votes cast in the last presidential election.

Americans' rush to vote is leading election experts to predict that a record 150 million votes may be cast and turnout rates could be higher than in any presidential election since 1908.

For the turnout in every county in Florida, visit the Florida Division of Elections’ website.

Floridians voting by mail in recent elections

Associated Press contributed to this report.

About the Author:

Digital election producer in 2022. He created in 1995 and managed The Local Station's website through 2021.