Does early voting affect political campaigns and election outcomes?

August 19, 2016

New Rochelle, NY, August 19, 2016--A study of early voting patterns in states that have adopted an extended voting period shows several important trends related to voter age and partisanship (voters with strong party affiliations versus independents). The study results and their policy implications are discussed in an article in Election Law Journal, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Election Law Journal website until September 23, 2016.

Vivekinan Shok, Mary McGrath, and Eitan Hersh, Yale University (New Haven, CT), and Daniel Feder, Benenson Strategy Group (New York, NY), compared the demographic characteristics of early voters in the fall 2012 elections and those who voted on Election Day. In the article "The Dynamic Election: Patterns of Early Voting Across Time, State, Party, and Age", the authors note that currently about 25-33% of votes in the U.S. are cast prior to Election Day.

"Typically, most observers think of the 'early vote' as one homogenous mass of voters who choose to cast their ballots prior to election day. These authors discover that 'early' early voters tend to be older and more partisan, while 'late deciding' early voters are younger and more likely to be independents," says Election Law Journal Editor Paul Gronke, Reed College (Portland, OR). "This has important implications for the way we understand early voting returns in elections. We need to look very skeptically at the first voting totals that will be reported in mid-October; they are far from representative of the final electorate."
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About the Journal

Election Law Journal is an authoritative peer-reviewed journal published quarterly online with open access options and in print that provides global, interdisciplinary coverage of election law, policy, and administration. Led by Editor Paul Gronke, Reed College (Portland, OR), the Journal covers the field of election law for practicing attorneys, election administrators, political professionals, legal scholars, and social scientists, and covers election design and reform on the federal, state, and local levels. Complete tables of contents and a sample issue are available on the Election Law Journal website.

About the Publisher

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research and law, including Biotechnology Law Report, Gaming Law Review and Economics, and Environmental Justice. Its biotechnology trade magazine, GEN (Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News), was the first in its field and is today the industry's most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm's 80 journals, books, and newsmagazines is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website.

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News

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