Upon picking up as many Gene Wu signs as possible at Early Vote locations, I arrived Friday night at the Alief Library to see a line wrapped around the Kirkwood side of the building. What was more impressive about the line was that we were arriving at nearly 8pm. What was less impressive was that it meant our quick sign pickup venture would turn into an unplanned, hour-long campaign festival. Here’s what it looked like without the Kirkwood side of the building …
So this brought on a little inquiry about the makeup of voters who were casting votes late into Friday night around the county. It turns out that there were 9,872 voters who cast their votes from 7pm on. Many of those may have been in line since well before 7pm, but this is a good enough timestamp to apply universally. Remember that Friday saw over 11% of the votes cast by voters who were in line at or near 7pm and ended up waiting as long as 9:49 at the Alief Library. The overall lengthiest closing time was 10:30pm at the Franz Road Storefront.
A quick glance at the data might suggest good things for Republicans. The Champion Life Center in HD150 was the biggest post-7pm location and several other heavy GOP areas are in the Top 10 list for number of voters who cast their votes in this time period. Alief, it turns out, was only the 8th biggest such location.
But putting the raw data into VAN gets a surprising result: the total of such voters throughout the county were roughly 57-59% Democratic. That’s compared to a full Friday reading that saw voters at a 52-53% Dem share. And even that wasn’t the result of Democratic House Districts turning out at higher rates than GOP House Districts. Voters who reside in HD138 (Bohac) and HD126 (Harless) saw their post-7pm voters as majority Democatric, while HD135 (Elkins) was right on the cusp of 50-50 status after 7pm.
I don’t offer the above as anything more than possibly suggestive about the degree of enthusiasm or energy for voting – either in full, or for Tuesday. What’s lacking in this is some historical context about the late voters from 2008 or 2004. I’m not overly fond of relying on a selective data view like this for anything more than it is … pretty interesting.
We’ll see soon enough what it may or may not mean for Tuesday.