Tracking Ohio’s absentee ballot requests.

We[**] got a guy out there doing just that, and the link to his spreadsheet is here.

Executive summary: the process is ongoing, and what’s being tracked are absentee/early ballot REQUESTS, not turned-in ballots.  So it’s not telling us who’s ahead in Ohio; it’s merely telling us what we know of which party’s members are asking for ballots.  In other words, it’s a possible measure of voter enthusiasm in Ohio.  So…

2012 2008 % of 08
Total 601208 740725 81%
Democrat 177155 288270 61%
Republican 145560 144300 101%
Cuyohoga 159572 231497 69%
D Cuyahoga 86274 119891 72%
R Cuyahoga 38134 35067 109%
Hamilton 61253 102796 60%
D Hamilton 9793 16763 58%
R Hamilton 18304 23677 77%
Summit 39056 92941 42%
D Summit 9581 43524 22%
R Summit 7525 12857 59%

The above shows first the total absentee/early ballot requests of all counties currently reporting*, for both 2008 and 2012; followed by the current totals for three of the top five most populous counties in Ohio (full information is not yet available in [Republican] Franklin and [Democratic] Montgomery counties).  So, in 2008 the total absentee/early ballots for all counties currently captured by the linked spreadsheet was just under 741 thousand; the 2012 equivalent so far is currently 601 thousand, or 81% of 2008’s total.  And when you look at the partisan breakdowns… simply put, the Democrats are not requesting absentee ballots at the same rate as Republicans are.  Of the three counties listed above, only Hamilton is particularly Republican… yet Cuyahoga Democrats have yet to reach their 2008 numbers while the Republican numbers have, and it may still end up that Summit county Republicans will surpass the Democrats there.  In fact, if this trend continues then total Republican early/absentee ballot requests in Ohio may surpass total Democratic ballots; it is uncertain whether the Democrats will match their 2008 totals, while the Republicans very probably will

Shorter executive summary: what we know of early/absentee ballot requests in Ohio does not support the current narrative that Ohioan Democratic voters are as enthusiastic about voting in 2012 as they were in 2008.  This in turn does not support the current narrative that the Democrats will do better in Ohio in 2012 than they did in 2008.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

*This is an important caveat: there are considerably more counties out there that still need to report in.  This report indicates that there were a total of 1.72 million absentee/early voters in Ohio in 2012; clearly the process has a way to go.

[**UPDATE: For the record, that ‘we’ is generic.]

[Another UPDATE: Fixed spelling.]

13 thoughts on “Tracking Ohio’s absentee ballot requests.”

  1. Everyone knows what they must do. It only remains to do it. Ignore polls. Ignore “news”. Ignore everything except your path to the ballot box. There is nothing else. Nothing.

  2. I love this kind of stuff. This tells me that GOP has already surpassed their 2008 totals at least for these counties. Will check back as other counties report.

    1. Andrew: the spreadsheet links to the various county election sites in Ohio that provide this information, when it can; if it was gotten via email, the spreadsheet is noting that. A spot check of mine didn’t reveal any shenanigans; and the guy who did it is pretty straightforward about the limitations. So I figure that if you’re worried, you can check all that out for yourself.

      Note that I am politely assuming that your question was not shorthand for “Please don’t destroy my worldview?” This is correct, yes?

  3. Since I live in Maryland and my republican vote doesn’t count, I wish I could get an Ohio absentee ballot.

  4. On the polls to paraphrase @NumbersMuncher (who everyone should follow) regarding the polls: if the Dems outturn us by +7 and 1 in every 6 Republicans dissatisfied with The President vote for him anyway, then yes the President will win Ohio and be reelected. Now to add tnfriend’s opinion to that, if anything close to that happens then Republicans would have been outworked and outhustled and deserve to lose. In addition, where that to happen, Republicans should not bother pointing fingers at the MSM or Romney or even the President when assigning blame, they should point at the mirror – rant over.

  5. I don’t need polls or absentee ballot numbers to tell me that Romney will win Ohio. First, Obama won the state in 2008 by 4.5%. Does anybody actually think that Obama is in better shape today than 4 years ago? Hell no. Next, three states that border Ohio–Indiana, Kentucky, and W. Va.–have completely turned against Obama. 42% of W.Va. dems voted for a FELON over Obama; in Ky., 40% of dems voted “uncommitted” over Obama; and Obama’s campaign gave up on Indiana 2 years ago. Does anybody really believe that the Ohioans that live right across the border from these states are as enthused–let alone more enthused–for Obama this year? Hell no. Also, Obama is struggling in Western Pa., which borders Ohio as well. Next, Obama’s coal policies have ticked off Southeastern Ohio, which is Appalachia and coal country.

    BTW, the most telling early absentee ballot count is in Warren County (Cincinnati suburb). Republicans have returned their absentee ballots in at a 5 to 1 clip over Democrats. This suggests that a huge Republican turnout is going to happen in this election, and a lot of Dems are going to stay home. Also, a higher turnout in Ohio benefits Republicans, b/c this means more whites will show up, and whites support Romney by 60/40.

  6. BTW, the latest numbers out of Montgomery County, Ohio, must have the dems spitting bricks. Montgomery County is basically Dayton, which has a large African American population. There has been a precipitous drop-off in overall absentee ballot applications from 4 years ago, and an even bigger drop-off of the dem share of those requested. Cuyohoga County (Cleveland) has slightly better numbers for dems, but they are still terrible compared to 4 years ago. The numbers out of SE Ohio are also dismal for dems. It looks like Obama’s war on coal is going to cost him tens of thousands of votes.

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