Millions of Americans are breaking voter-turnout records with three weeks to go before Election Day, with Democrats casting early ballots at a far higher rate than Republicans.
Concerns about the coronavirus pandemic have increased mail-in voting and led to unprecedented levels of early voting, especially among Democrats. More than 17 million voters have cast their ballot early, either in person or by mail, in states that report voting data, according to the University of Florida Elections Project.
As President Donald Trump and the Republican Party bet on Election Day in-person turnout, states that he won by a small margin in 2016 are seeing more Democrats voting early.
With 18 days of frenetic campaigning by Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden still ahead, many states allow early voting. This year, with enthusiasm running high, voters have already cast nearly 13% of the total votes counted in the 2016 general election.
Battleground states like Ohio and Georgia among others have already set records in voter turnout. In other critical states, such as Florida, Michigan and Wisconsin, early voting turnout has already reached 20% or more of the total turnout for the 2016 election.
Democrats are significantly outpacing Republicans in early voting turnout in the 15 states that report party registration data, according to the Elections Project. Democrats have returned almost 2.5 million more ballots in those states than Republicans have. Meanwhile, Democrats have requested 9.7 million more ballots than Republicans.
The Republican Party said its supporters will make up the difference on Nov. 3.