Around 44 million people had cast their ballots early for the midterm elections as of November 7. Of those, roughly 20 million people voted in person nationwide, while more than 24 million returned their ballot by mail. This is around a 13 percent increase from 2018, when the last midterms were held. Then, a total of 39 million ballots were counted, according to the U.S. Elections Project.
Analysts claim that this could be interpreted as a good sign for Democrats, as in past years the party’s followers have been more likely to vote ahead. While even with these figures it is unclear what the midterm results will be, it does show that there is an increase in political engagement in several states. As The Washington Post notes, 2.5 million people had voted in person early on Friday in Georgia this year when early voting ended, far surpassing the 1.9 million who cast their ballot early in 2018.
It is worth noting that in some states, for example in Vermont and Hawaii, early voting was much higher than in the last midterms because these states changed the law to make it easier to vote early by mail. In 2018, Hawaii moved to all mail-in, which explains the state’s high figures. Vermont in 2021 changed its law to mail out ballots to all active voters without the need to request.
The U.S. Elections Project was last updated on 7 November, with states showing the latest available data.