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Early voter increase in Tippecanoe County is unusually high

The number of early voters at the polls each day is just 15 to 20 people shy of how many voters came out early for the 2016 presidential election.

Posted: Oct. 16, 2018 6:21 PM
Updated: Oct. 16, 2018 6:22 PM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — Tippecanoe County early voting polls saw a large increase in voters this year. Early voting at the polls opened Oct. 10 and numbers are nearly as high as the last presidential election.

County Clerk Christa Coffey, said voters at the polls this year is beyond what the election board planned for.

“We plan for what we think will happen and this one has gone way beyond our planning, which is exciting,” said Coffey.

The number of early voters at the polls each day is just 15 to 20 people shy of how many voters came out early for the 2016 presidential election. According to Coffey, this is odd for a midterm.

“Midterms aren't typically exciting, which is kind of sad to say because they're important offices but this is the first time we've had a contested senate race that wasn't also on the presidential cycle in more than a decade,” said Coffey.

Although it's still too early to determine exactly what's driving people to the polls, Coffey said it could be a combination of factors.

“Are these election day voters who are voting early now because they've discovered the ease of it, are these people who vote at Payless but they're now voting in the office or offsite? It's an interesting dynamic, I'm not sure what to make of it yet,” said Coffey.

Coffey said traditionally Tippecanoe is an overall republican county but as the city is changing and growing the voter demographic could be different this year.

“It'll be an interesting result because with the volume of a midterm like this, it just will be fascinating to see where the voters landed,” said Coffey.

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