After being caught unawares by an unexpectedly high Republican / conservative turnout in the first week of early voting, the Dallas County Democrats have been pulling out all the stops to turn out the Democrat vote in South Dallas–with some level of success.
Based on our review of the early voting tallies, their efforts have borne some fruit. At the close of early voting, our analysis shows that the Democrats have turned out approximately 19,000 more known Democrat partisans (Democratic primary voters):
It should be noted that these numbers, taken by themselves, overstate the level of Democratic turnout, owing to the fact that there are approximately 100,000 more identified Democrats than identified Republicans in Dallas County.
In addition to the identified partisans, 64,079 voters have cast ballots in early voting. As noted in our prior turnout report, there are many different methods of estimating the partisan makeup of the unknown voters. Depending on the specific turnout model employed, the unknown voters may be slightly biased toward the Democrats, heavily-biased toward the Republicans, or somewhere in between:
Which of the above models is closest to accurate? It’s difficult to say. One of the difficulties in modeling 2014 turnout is that the precinct lines were redrawn in 2012. Thus, it can be complicated to model turnout in the new precincts without using 2012 data, but presidential year patterns (’08, ’12) are generally very different than mid-year patterns (’10, ’14).
We think it is very likely that the actual vote totals lie somewhere in between Model #1 and Model #5, above, and likely closest to Model #4. If so, this places the two parties nearly even in Early Voting turnout, meaning that every vote will count on Election Day.
If you haven’t already voted, please vote on Tuesday–and please encourage everyone you know to vote–and to vote in every contested race.