Nearly 100 million american voted early on in 2020, an enormous, record-breaking figure heading right into Election Day.

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The early vote in 2020 has far surpassed the total early poll in 2016. The at an early stage vote surge shows turnout in 2020 could be the greatest in a century, at around 65 percent of the voting-eligible population, or around 150 million voters.

And 2016 wasn’t exactly shabby in turnout: around 60 percent of those standard voted.

“We’re seeing a very energized, interested electorate, and we’re see a public, ns think, that is responding to a article that you require to actors that ballot early this year,” Paul Gronke, a professor that political scientific research at Reed College that runs the at an early stage Voting info Center, said.

Enthusiasm among both Democratic and also Republican voters is high. President Donald trump is the reason: His supporters space extremely motivated to reelect your guy, and also the various other side is extremely encouraged to poll him out.

A voter casts a ballot in Washington, DC, on October 27. Tom Williams/CQ-Roll call via Getty pictures voters also soaked up the “vote early” directive, likely motivated by safety and security concerns about voting during the coronavirus pandemic, and also by rhetoric about the truth of the choice system, indigenous the Trumpian assaults on mail-in voting to autonomous concerns about a dysfunctional united state Postal Service.

But quite than deterring civilization from voting, it may have driven them come the polls. “People room responding — thankfully, not by not casting a ballot, however by casting very early ballot,” Gronke added.

Beyond turnout, the early vote data supplies only partial clues around the electorate in 2020. It clues at who voting, how, and where they space on the electoral map. But what that absolutely can’t carry out is estimate the thing that numerous are fretting about: that is going come win.

That will need to wait till at the very least election night, and potentially job after. However in the meantime, is here to answer all the concerns you have around the at an early stage vote: what the looks like, what the means, and whether this choice year can radically change how America votes, because that good.

1) What did early voting turnout look choose in 2020?

due to a mix of the pandemic and increased enthusiasm, early voting and mail-in vote were more popular than ever. Last month, with 11 work left to go prior to the election, the number of early votes officially exceeded 2016 at an early stage vote numbers. By choice Day, more than 99 million people cast early votes — 72 percent that the whole 2016 turnout, according to united state Elections Project, run by the college of Florida’s Michael McDonald.

All states available early vote or mail-in options, despite the certain rules and deadlines differ by state. Nine claims — California, Colorado, Hawaii, Nevada, brand-new Jersey, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, and also Washington — together with Washington, DC, mailed ballots to all eligible voters. Rather — Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, and also Texas — required certain reasons to get a mail-in ballot.

In Texas, Washington, Montana, and Hawaii, at an early stage voter turnout surpassed complete votes in 2016. In other states, early on vote numbers space near full 2016 turnout numbers, including North Carolina (95 percent), Georgia (94 percent), and also Florida (94 percent), suggesting total voter turnout could end increase being higher than in 2016.

2) how many world voted by mail versus in person?

The majority of at an early stage votes are coming in the form of mail-in ballots, which make up about two-thirds of the an ext than 99 million beforehand votes, according to data native the us Elections Project.

Trump has sought come discredit this kind of voting with a disinformation campaign, however mail-in voter fraud is very rare. The mail-in choice has additionally been stymied through Postal service delays. If you have a mail-in ballot that you haven’t turned in yet, nothing mail it. Instead, you must drop it off at an choice drop box or vote in human being in order come guarantee her vote is counted.

People have also been transforming out come a lesser level to vote in person ahead that the election, with nearly 36 million doing so hence far. High turnout for early voting have the right to be watched in lengthy lines throughout the country.

3) Who, exactly, voted early?

according to the us Elections Project, in the 20 says that report party registration, Democrats have a 15 percentage suggest lead in at an early stage votes over Republicans.

However, the data is most likely skewed by the consist of of states like California (a very populous and Democratic state) and also the unavailability that data from states like Texas (also extremely populous and much more Republican).

TargetSmart, a democratic data certain that provides voter file data in enhancement to consumer data to model at an early stage voter demographics in claims where that details is unavailable, mirrors that democrats have much more like a 6 percentage suggest lead over Republicans. The course, partisan affiliation, when indicative of how a person might vote, no guarantee a human will vote for your party’s candidates.

Perhaps most notable are the beforehand turnout numbers amongst people that didn’t vote at every in 2016. For this reason far, 26.5 million human being voted in 2020 that didn’t poll at all in 2016, follow to TargetSmart data. “Those room the world who have the capacity to adjust the composition of the electorate loved one to 2016,” TargetSmart CEO Tom Bonier told

Just over one-quarter that these new voters are under 30, suggesting these no just civilization who are freshly of poll age. Those new voters, the said, room also much more likely to be democracy and much more likely come be oriental or Hispanic 보다 the electorate at large. This group additionally includes seniors over 65, that may have sat the end in 2016. Few of these voters changed in the 2018 midterms, component of the reason for the “blue wave” back then, Bonier said, however they’re returning again in 2020.

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Younger voters additionally turned out, and so much it’s one “astronomical” difference contrasted to 2016, according to Kristian Lundberg, an combine researcher at the facility for details Research & public Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE). In Texas, because that example, much more than 1 million voters eras 18 come 29 had actually voted early in this election together of October 27, contrasted to just a little much more than 100,000 that voted beforehand in 2016. Full youth turnout to be 1.2 million in Texas in 2016.

4) What kinds of difficulties did we view with early voting?

The greatest headlines native the early on vote were about long lines, long lines, lengthy lines. Long lines space sometimes celebrated as a sign of high voter enthusiasm. Pandemic safety protocols, a reduced number of polling sites, and also poll worker shortages in some places additionally slow under the process. Periodically technical glitches at poll sites cause delays, i beg your pardon ripple throughout the day.

And observers often point to the hours-long wait time that plenty of voters confront as component of a sample of voter suppression.

Voters in numerous of America’s peer democracies nothing spend hrs standing in line to actors their ballots, and US poll advocates think reforms such as expanding early voting and also standardizing part voting procedures and resources can ease wait times. The would additionally cut down on an ext nefarious suppression tactics, such together reducing the variety of polling train station in minority neighborhoods.

In 2020, experts see a combination of the problems that have long plagued us voting, along with the unpredictable realities that this weird year of poll in a pandemic.