BlogIn the LoopNews

Early Voting Nears All-Time High in Athens


Photo Credit: Savannah Cole/file

Early voting at the Athens-Clarke County Board of Elections.

The number of Georgians who’ve voted early passed the 1.6 million mark on Wednesday.

At this time during the last midterm election in 2014, the early voter count had almost reached 700,000, according to Georgia Votes.

Record early voting is also happening in Clarke County. So far, 17,576 people have cast their ballot in the county. While that’s fewer than the number who voted early in 2016—a presidential year when turnout is usually substantially higher—it’s a 155 percent increase compared to 2014. And there is still a day and a half to go before early voting ends.

According to Georgia Votes, 61 percent of early voters so far were white, 21 percent black, 2 percent Hispanic, 1 percent Asian and 14 percent other. Women made up 55 percent of early voters and men 40 percent (the sex of 5 percent is unknown).

Early voting has skewed toward younger and older voters. Twenty-one percent were between the ages of 18–29, 12 percent 30–39, 11 percent 40–49, 22 percent 50–64 and 31 percent 65 and up.

Older and white voters tend to vote Republican. However, that may not be true in Clarke County, which ranks as the 6th most blue in Georgia. 

So far, 44 percent of early voters in the county did not vote in 2014. Thirty percent of Clarke County early voters also voted early during the last governor’s race, and 26 percent voted on election day four years ago.