Close to 650,000 Floridians have cast ballots in the state’s Aug. 28 primary election, most of those ballots have been submitted by mail. More than 12,000 (12,653) ballots were cast Monday in 18 Florida counties that opened early voting locations. That’s according to statistics released by the Secretary of State’s office Tuesday morning.
But there is still no sign of a “blue wave” developing that Democrats are hoping for heading into the November midterm election, although more than 900 more Democrats cast ballots at early voting locations on Monday than did Republicans which could be an early sign of one developing in the early voting process.
Early voting began Monday in Bradford, Calhoun, Charlotte, Desoto, Duval, Franklin, Gadsden, Hendry, Hillsborough , Jefferson, Levy, Liberty, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Okeechobee, Palm Beach, Santa Rosa, Taylor counties.
Democrats led in the number of ballots cast in those counties with 6,390 ballots compared to 5,437 for Republicans.
But, but while Democrats lead in early voting numbers, Republicans continue to lead in vote-by-mail ballots by more than 47,000. More than 296,000 mail-in ballots have been returned by GOP voters, compared to just over 249,000 for Democrats.
The numbers are sure to change back-and-forth as more counties open their early voting locations in the next week and more voters participate in early voting. All 67 counties will have early voting locations open by the weekend. The actual primary election is still two weeks away.
Florida’s early voting rules require polls must begin 10 days before election day, with counties being allowed to add extra days. Polls must be open at least eight hours daily.
During early voting, voters can cast their ballots at any site in their county of residence. Dates, times and location vary by county.
For a complete list of early voting schedules, click here.
Mail-in voting began last week.