The first week of early voting have finished and the Blue Wave holds steady: Democrats have built up a voter edge of 28,508, less the ca 1000–1500 from rural counties that haven’t reported as of posting, for a voter lead of 9%, which is 3% above the Democrats active voter edge. This is comparable to what the Democrats had statewide in 2012 at this point, though the ca 27,000 voter lead is slightly smaller than the lead than they had statewide in 2012. The Republicans temporarily blunted the Blue Wave, but Democrats do best on or near the weekends and their success in turning out voters will indicate if the Republicans have a chance or not. This isn’t much of a lead, and even if the lead were much higher, it wouldn’t make much of a dent as absentees so far have been only about 8% of in-person early voting numbers.
The Democrat voter edge in Clark County remains at 15% (almost 40,000 votes), which is 1% above their active voter registration lead, and comparable to the Democrats’ lead in 2012 in raw voter numbers. The Democrat voter edge in Washoe County is 3½% (with voter lead dropping below 2500 votes), which is still 5% more than their deficit in active voters registered of 1½%, which is much more than the 1600 voter lead the Democrats had in Washoe county at this point. The ca 15,000 lead the Republicans have in rural counties help balance out the increase in strength for the Democrats in Washoe, yet again demonstrating that the fifteen rural counties (including Carson City) tend to punch well above their weight in elections. However, the rural counties almost never have early voting on Friday, meaning that their ability to help Republicans over this weekend will be blunted.
U.S. Senate & Congress
In 2012, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate, Dean Heller won by 1%, or 10,000 votes, against a completely horrible Democratic nominee, Shelley Berkeley, and a smaller voter lead for Democrats will help Joe Heck. While Joe Heck has a much better ground game and campaign than Heller did four years ago, Heller didn’t have to contend with the Trump effect, or with the campaign of Cortez Masto. While in almost any other year, Cortez Masto would be running a loosing campaign against Heck, the similar Democrat lead to 2012, despite a double-digit increase in active registered voters, is a good sign for Joe Heck.
Both the 3rd and 4th Congressional Districts find the Republicans trailing badly. Republicans are behind by 7701 votes in the 3rd Congressional District; the Democrat lead has been stable for the last few days, but Republicans will have to shrink this lead if they are to have any chance. In the 4th Congressional District, the Democrats have an overall lead of over 11,000 voters, even when including the less populous rural districts. The 4th Congressional District was a surprise pick-up in 2014, and was naturally going to swing back in 2016; this does not mean that it should not be targeted in 2018 either. This will be the first time that Clark County will not have a single Republican Representative in the House since Nevada had a single district back in the 1980 election.
State Senate & Assembly
With the Republicans having a slip 11-10 lead in the Nevada state Senate, the tipping point of control for the next four years will be SD6, which the Republicans were able to pick up in 2012. Republican nominee Gloria Seaman is still behind by about 1900 votes, which is a slight improvement from the previous day, though Republicans will have to cut this down even more if they are to have a chance. The Democrats also have nearly a 2000 voter lead in SD5; which is a slight improvement for the Democrats since the previous day.
The Assembly is looking to be an absolute disaster for the Republicans. In 2014, Republicans picked up nine seats in Clark County. At this point, Republicans were up in early voters in eight of the nine seats they ended up picking up, and were also ahead in a seat that didn’t have a Republican running (the hard right Independent American Party won about 40% of the vote in the end). This year, they are behind in all ten seats. More ominously, they are behind in four seats they won in 2012: AD2, AD4, AD19, and AD22; AD2 is the home of the state Assembly Speaker. Republicans only lead in three seats that are wholly inside Clark County: AD13, AD23, AD37. An additional seat that the Republicans lead in overall, but are behind in Clark County is AD36. This alone is enough to give the Democrats a 2/3 supermajority, even without picking up a seat in Washoe county they lost in 2014. While the Republicans won three seats in Clark County in 2014 they were behind in early votes, that margin for each one was less than 100 votes; there is a greater margin for Democrats in some seats the Republicans won in both 2014 and 2014.
Here are the percentages and comparison with 2012:
|Early Vote + Absentee||36.4%||43.9%||19.6%|
|Early Vote 2012||36.3%||46.0%||17.7%|
|Early + Absentee 2012||37.3%||45.3%||17.4%|
|Total Early 2012||36.1%||44.5%||19.4%|
|Total Early + Absentee 2012||37.0%||43.8%||17.7%|
|Early Vote + Absentee||32.3%||47.6%||20.1%|
|Early Vote 2012||31.6%||50.2%||18.2%|
|Early + Absentee 2012||32.8%||49.4%||17.8%|
|Total Early 2012||32.2%||48.2%||19.5%|
|Total Early + Absentee 2012||33.1%||47.6%||19.3%|
|Early Vote + Absentee||38.9%||42.4%||18.7%|
|Early Vote 2012||40.7%||42.7%||16.6%|
|Early + Absentee 2012||41.0%||42.4%||16.6%|
|Total Early Vote 2012||40.5%||40.0%||19.5%|
|Total Early + Absentee 2012||40.5%||39.9%||19.6%|
3rd Congressional District
|Actual Election Results||50.4%||42.9%||6.8%|
4th Congressional District (excepting part of Lyon County)**
|Actual Election Results||42.1%||50.1%||7.8%|
5th state Senate District
|Actual Election Results||48.0%||52.0%||N/A|
6th state Senate District
|Actual Election Results||50.8%||49.2%||N/A|
After the first week of early voting, it is looking like 2016 will be a worse year than 2012, and potentially worse than 2008. The biggest difference will be the loss of one and maybe two state Senate seats that they won, though barely, in 2012, as well as the loss of the 3rd Congressional District due to having perpetual loser Danny Tarkanian instead of Joe Heck. The 4th Congressional District is likely lost, and the 3rd Congressional District is quickly following suite. The 6th state Senate District (and thus the state Senate) may be lost for the GOP, who may loose yet another seat. The Trump factor might sink the Republican’s hope of picking up a U.S. Senate seat they desperately need to offset losses elsewhere. The Assembly is looking to be a total disaster for Republicans
To whit: Republicans should be hitting the panic button like a crack monkey.
* As of posting, the following counties haven’t sent in numbers for Friday yet: Carson City, Churchill, Esmeralda, Lander, Lyon, and Minderal.
** Lyon County is split between the 1st and 4th Congressional Districts, and early vote broken down by CD was not immediately available; in 2012, Lyon county gave 3012 votes to the Republican, 1002 to the Democrat, and 280 votes to two 3rd Party candidates.
**As of posting, the following counties wholly within the 4th Congressional district haven’t sent in numbers for Thursday yet: Esmeralda and Mineral.
Let up be reminded of the words of Virgil:
“Do not yield to evil, Attack, attack, more boldly even than fortune seems to permit”
— Virgil, “The Æneid”
Until the next update…