Just under 70 percent of the eligible voters in the state are expected to cast ballots in next Tuesday’s election -about 3.1 million people living in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin Elections Commission director Michael Haas says voter turnout is expected to be at about the same level as the number of ballots cast in the state during the last two presidential elections. “We typically look at history for guidance in predicting turnout,” Haas says. “We expect turnout for this election to be similar to previous presidential elections.”
During the 2008 race, 69.2 of the voting age population cast ballots, while about 70.4 percent cast ballots during the 2012 race. If 3.1 million people turn out by next Tuesday, that would amount to 69.6 percent of the 4.4 million eligible voters living in the state.
While many voters have already been casting absentee ballots in this election, Haas notes that it’s not always a clear indicator of the overall turnout. As of Thursday, more than 623,000 absentee ballots had been cast in the state, compared to overall totals of about 659,000 in 2012 and 640,000 in 2008.
The state’s largest turnout percentage ever in a presidential election over the last 50 years was 72.9 percent in 2004. The highest number of actual votes cast during that time period was in 2012, when about 3,080,628 ballots were counted.