Decision 2020: Voter turnout triples throughout the years

MEDFORD, Ore. – It’s a little over a week before Election Day and voter turnout is already way up in Jackson Co.

Jackson Co. Clerk Chris Walker doesn’t have the data to compare the turnout to 20-16. However, compared to 2012, the turnout is three times higher.

So far, nearly 1-point-2 million Oregonians have already cast their vote.

“I’m estimating possibly 85 percent. With the rate returns are coming back now we’re definitely higher than we’ve been in previous elections,” said Walker.

Jackson Co. Clerk Chris Walker said 42% of the county’s voters have also weighed in. That’s more than 55,000 of the county’s 161,000 eligible voters.

“When we went home last Friday we were at 34% turnout. As you can see that’s almost three times the turnout in what we had in 2012 on that Friday,” said Walker.

Jackson County’s turned increasingly purple in recent years. In 2016, there were less than 3,000 registered Democrats than Republicans in the county. The fastest rising voting group are non-affiliated voters.

“We have more non-affiliated voters in Jackson Co. and it is the norm now in each county in the state of Oregon,” said Walker.

Walker says she’s hearing the same trend from other local counties – lots of voters getting their ballots in early.

“As far as who is turning out and who isn’t is probably the same statewide,” said Walker.

In Klamath Co., 38% of votes are in. In Josephine Co., 33% of votes are in.

“We make it as easy as we can in the state of Oregon for our voters to easily access and cast their ballots. We recommend you all do that exercise your right to vote. It’s the American way,” said Walker.

The turnout is always higher in presidential election years. In 2016, 77% of Jackson Co. voters got their ballot in.

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