On the last day of early voting, Harris County had blown past its 2018 early voting turnout, on the strength of strong increases in both Democratic and Republican primary voters.
As of Friday morning more than 104,000 people had voted early in the Democratic primary, compared to 87,916 total early voters in the 2018 midterm primary and 85,816 in the 2016 presidential.
Republican early voting totals have fluctuated, likely due to noncompetitive races at the top of the ticket. At this point in 2016, there were 98,152 early voters in the Republican presidential primary, compared to 66,146 in 2018. But despite being slightly below 2016 totals, this year turnout for the Republican primary bounced back, at least partially, with 87,123 early voters thus far.
On average more than 10,000 voters per day have showed up early in the Democratic contest, and more than 8,700 per day have voted in the Republican primary.
Higher voter turnout among Democrats than Republicans is likely due to the competitive Democratic presidential race. President Donald Trump has not faced any serious challenger to his nomination as the Republican nominee.
Democratic turnout was boosted in the 2018 midterms at least in part by Beto O’Rourke’s challenge to incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz in the general election.
Early Voting ends Friday at 7 p.m. Head over to www.harrisvotes.com to find a voting location near you and polls open on Tuesday March 3rd at 7 am and will close at 7 pm.