Early voting numbers drop ahead of midterms

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Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 6:23 PM CST
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - The last day of early voting saw a big turnout Monday, but early voting numbers remain lower than the 2018 and 2020 elections.

The Old National Event Plaza was the only early voting center open Monday. Voters lined the halls, in some cases waiting an hour and a half to cast their ballot.

“This is the longest line we’ve seen at this location, this is the Old National Events Plaza, since the first day of early voting on Oct. 12,” Vanderburgh County Circuit Court Clerk Carla Hayden said.

She says the big turnout just one day before the midterms may be a sign of things to come on Tuesday.

“We usually figure here that about half of the people have voted before election day, we’ll see if that holds true,” Hayden said. “The climate of the country has changed so maybe there are some people who are waiting until election day to cast their ballot.”

It remains to be seen just how many voters came out ahead of Election Day, but a big Monday push could put this election on par with the last midterms.

As of Saturday, Nov. 5, 16,853 early votes were cast, and 4,641 mail-in ballots had been received. Hayden says they’re still waiting on around 400 mail-in ballots to come back.

While it doesn’t show the full total from early voting, these numbers are lower than the past two general elections.

In the last midterm in 2018, Hayden says 23,500 people voted early and 4,765 cast mail-in ballots.

In 2020 for the presidential election, 30,879 people voted early and 9,750 voted by mail.

Of course, the presidential election always sees a higher turnout, and with the pandemic in full tilt, Hayden says more votes were sent in by mail.

The 2022 numbers may end up being close to the last midterms due to that big turnout on the final day.

If the trend of half the votes coming before Election Day continues — like Hayden says it has in the past — Vanderburgh Co. could see over 50,000 votes cast by the time the polls close Tuesday.

Voting locations are open on Election Day from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.

As always, if you are in line before 6 p.m. you will be allowed to cast your vote.