With 1.2M early ballots cast, Colorado Democrats and GOP are neck and neck. What about those unaffiliated voters?

Ballots being processed at the Denver Election Commission. (Photo by Phil Cherner)

About a third — more than 1.2 million — of active registered Colorado voters have cast ballots as of this morning, the secretary of state announced.

With four days to go until Election Day, Democrats and Republicans have cast about the same number of ballots, while unaffiliated voters — the state’s largest voter pool — are lagging behind both major parties by about 60,000 votes. There are about 3.3 million active registered voters in Colorado. Election Day is this Tuesday, Nov. 6.

On Friday, Nov. 2, Republicans had a 219-vote advantage. Over the past week, that lead was stronger, but Democrats have narrowed it considerably. All told, Republicans have cast 424,010 ballots so far, and Democrats sent in 423,791.

Meanwhile, Colorado’s more than 1.2 million unaffiliated voters have cast 364,716 ballots. A big question is which way they will swing to affect the partisan statewide and legislative races on this year’s ballot.

We did get an idea of how they might vote if the results of this year’s primaries are any indication. This was the first year unaffiliated voters could participate in a party primary, and they could only pick one. The number of unaffiliated voters was about 270,000. Of that number, 63 percent chose a Democratic ballot and 37 percent picked a Republican one, according to data from the secretary of state’s office. Already, 132,066 unaffiliated voters have cast ballots in this election.

Colorado pollsters and ballot trackers said they see an enthusiasm among Democratic voters and a depressed GOP turnout so far compared to the 2014 midterms.

On the third-party front, 9,654 Libertarians have cast ballots and 2,452 Green Party members have voted. Members of The Unity Party, a new third party, cast 196 votes so far.

Voters between the ages of 41 and 60 are casting more early votes in Colorado than any other age group, today’s data show — already turning in nearly 400,000 ballots. By contrast, the youngest voting population, those 18 to 25, have cast about 62,000 ballots.

One of the bigger shifts in today’s data is a large surge in votes coming out of Democrat-heavy Denver. Voters in conservative El Paso County were in the top three early-vote counties for returns over the past week, but now Denver voters have overtaken them. Voters in Denver have turned in 133,082 ballots while El Paso County voters sent in 133,121.

Here’s the breakdown as of Nov. 2 of Colorado’s early ballot returns in the 2018 General Election, per the secretary of state:


  1. If amendment 73 goes through, selling hime next year and taking my business elsewhere. Raising twxes in small segment of population and on all busineses is foolish. We become a top 8 worst taxed state if it passes. No thank you. Vote no in 73 unless you want tonsee this economy crumble with exodus.

  2. Corey: Interesting how you made the age split at 41. I like to do it 44 and under then split that group 25 and under where then 45 and over where another split of 65 and over, All of which are all arbitrary since Strauss and Howe split these generation segments at under 1945, 1946 to 1962, 1963 to 1982, 1983 to 2002 and now 2002 on. (of course got to be born Nov 6, 2000 to vote). Ironically if you split the generation votes at these (73 and older, 72-56, 55-35, 34 under is a better model, but can only do that by getting the final vote database, this is what I can get.)

    Anyway under 44 age R’s = 72,000 (-15.5%), D’s = 115,000 (+47.4%) U’s = 122,000 (+ 42%) combined + 23.5%
    45-64 age R’s = 169,000 (-18.75%) D= 150,00 (-3.22%) U’s = 139,000 (+9.44%) combined 6.92%
    over 65 age R’s = 181,000 (+0.22%) D= 157,000 (+15.44%) U’s = 110,000 (+46.66%) combined +12.68%

    I not sure what anyone is looking at but here are the numbers: R base is as much age related as gender related 64 yrs and younger R’s are down between 15-19% and almost exactly even over 65 and older, while over 65 and under 44 D’s gained big while in the middle it is down a tad, WHILE among U’s up big in the young, strong among older and up in the middle.
    So let us look at gender by party affiliation.

    Woman R’s = 204,000 (-12.44%) D= 247,000 (+12.78%) U’s = 170,000 (+24%) combined +5.26%
    Men R’s = 216,000 (-15.26) D’s = 171,000 (14%) U’s = 193,000 (+26%) combine +6.54%

    R woman and men are down 12-15% while D men and woman are up 12-14%, while U men and woman are up 24-26% Ironically 2014 and 2016 final four day ballot turn ins favored D’s by increasing their split 1% but hugely U’s as U’s grew their split overall participation by almost 5%.

    My bet is that U woman come in big this weekend and send older, white haired men a message.

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