With less than a week to go until Election Day, residents around the nation are turning out in droves to vote early, either in person or by mail. According to a new report, at least 20 million people have already cast their ballots for the midterm elections as of Wednesday morning — and women are leading the way among early voters.
A new analysis of ballots from CNN and data company Catalist reveals some of the key demographics among early voters in seven key states: Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Montana, Nevada, Tennessee, and Texas. According to its findings, more women than men have hit the polls early in the lead-up to the midterms this year.
As the report concludes, more than 50 percent of people who voted early in each of the above states were women. So far, Georgia has seen the largest split between men and women, with more than an 11 percent gap between female early voters (55.6%) and male early voters (44.4). Montana has the smallest gap between, but women still came out in the majority with 51.6% heading to the polls early.
There are still plenty of ballots to be cast before the end of Election Day, but the analysis could be reflective of the larger trend that the nation has seen played out in campaigns over the last several months. With topics like women’s health care, abortion rights, and workplace harassment continuing to make headlines, women have been inspired to take political action more than ever before. This year’s midterms saw a a historical number of women candidates running for office — and with so many issues directly affecting women currently being debated in politics, it’s no surprise women are making it a priority to hit the polls.
But women aren’t the only demographic currently leading the way among early voters. Per the CNN report, older voters are also currently outvoting younger voters in the seven key battleground states. Citizens of the age 65 or older make up the majority among each of the state’s early voters, with Florida and Arizona seeing the greatest turnout in the demographic (48.6 and 46.8 percent, respectively). Of the seven examined states, Texas has seen the higher percentage of young voters so far. The data shows that over 10 percent of early voters have been under the 30 years old.
Perhaps most importantly though is that the number of votes already cast this cycle has been high. Most states have already surpassed 2014 in early voting, and some are approaching presidential election year turnout, which is typically much higher than that of midterms. According to The New York Times, the enthusiasm among voters could put the country on track to see its highest level of turnout in over 50 years.
Cover image via Mindy Schauer/Digital First Media/Orange County Register via Getty Images.