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Early voting: Pivotal Midwest states see uptick in young voters


With four days until November 3, here’s a deeper look at who’s already voted in these key states, with data from Catalist, a company that provides data, analytics and other services to Democrats, academics and nonprofit issue-advocacy organizations.

The Hawkeye state voted twice for the Obama-Biden ticket but then backed Trump-Pence by almost 10 points over Hillary Clinton in 2016. Polls show a tight race.

Democrats currently have a 16-point advantage over Republicans in the pre-Election Day vote. At this time four years ago, they led Republicans by just 10 points. This is not indicative of any outcome, as the GOP holds a slight edge in voter registration in the state, and polls show many Republicans nationwide prefer to vote on Election Day.

Voters under 30 make up 11% of all early voters so far — up four points from this time last cycle. Voters 30-64 are up five points from 43% of turnout at this point four years ago to 48% now. Voters 65 and older make up a smaller share of early voters than at this point four years ago.

The racial breakdown of Iowa’s early voting electorate remains consistent with this point in 2016, with White voters making up the vast majority — 94% — of those who have already cast ballots.

Michigan

Trump earned Michigan’s 16 electoral votes four years ago with a 0.2% margin of victory. This year, Biden and Democrats are fighting to rebuild the so-called Blue Wall. Before Trump’s win, the state hadn’t voted for a Republican presidential nominee since 1988. The state expanded mail voting as an option to all voters in this year’s election.

Currently, 10% of voters so far in the state are under 30 — at this point four years ago, only 3% were. While voters 65 or older made up 78% of early voters in 2016, they make up 44% of early voters so far this year.

Black voters in Michigan have increased their share of ballots already cast compared to four years ago. They account for about 12% of those early votes so far, up from 8% at this point in 2016. White voters still represent the majority of those who’ve already cast ballots, although their share has decreased from 89% last cycle to about 83% currently.

Minnesota

Both Trump and Biden will make stops in Minnesota on Friday, a state Hillary Clinton won by less than two points in 2016. The President sees the state as a possible opportunity to expand the map this year, even though no Republican presidential nominee has won here since 1972.

Young voters make up 12% of early voters in Minnesota, more than twice the 5% share they had at this point in 2016.

Black voters, Asian voters and Hispanic voters in Minnesota have seen one-percentage point upticks in their shares of ballots already cast compared to this time in 2016.

White voters currently comprise a slightly smaller percentage of those early votes at 88%, down from 92% four years ago.

Wisconsin

Trump won the Badger State by less than one point in 2016, breaking a Democratic presidential streak dating back to 1988.

Wisconsin has seen a large decrease in the share of early votes from people 65 or older, but the state hasn’t seen as much of an increase from voters under 30. Seniors went from 48% of the early vote in 2016 to 36% now. Voters under 30 made up only 4% of pre-Election Day voters four years ago but now make up 5%. The largest increase has actually come from voters with unknown ages. Those voters made up 5% of early voters four years ago, but now make up about 12%.

The breakdown of Wisconsin’s early voters by race remains similar to that of four years ago. White voters represent a significant majority of those early votes at about 89%, followed by Black voters at 5%.


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