[ANALYSIS] Coming from behind: Post-Election Day gains for Democrat candidates are the norm, not the 2018 exception

U.S. Senator Kyrsten Sinema speaking at the 2019 Legislative Forecast Luncheon hosted by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce & Industry. /Photo by Gage Skidmore/ Flickr

By Jeremy Duda | Arizona Mirror

The post-Election Day shift toward Democrats that flipped the outcomes of several major races in 2018 wasn’t abnormal. While it marks the first time in the past decade that races had lead changes several days after the election, an Arizona Mirror analysis finds that Democrats consistently gain ground on Republicans among ballots counted after Election Day.

Democratic candidates in Arizona gained more ground than usual in 2018, a year that saw massive Democratic gains nationwide as the party capitalized on President Donald Trump’s unpopularity.

A large portion of those ballots counted in the days after Election Day are early ballots that voters drop off at polling places instead of mailing back to elections officials. In 2018, there were 228,000 such ballots.


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