Florida pre-Election Day vote totals for Oct. 18: Republicans inching ahead.

voteFor latest pre-Election Day numbers, click here.

Yesterday, the gap between registered Democrats and Republicans voting in Florida was down to 90 votes. Today, the Republicans have increased gap to 5,606. Overall, 633,853 people have submitted their ballots in Florida, which brings the turnout rate to 5.01%. When breaking down party totals, 5.84% of Republicans have turned out to vote, while 5.37% of Democrats have turned out to vote. The turnout rate for NPA/Other registered voters is 3.37%. As a result of the increase in Republican votes, the state swing is now 3.21% in favor of the Republicans, up from 2.34% yesterday.

The reason for the spike in Republican numbers is due to leaning and strong Republican counties counting their vote-by-mail total quickly. In Lee County, the overall turnout rate is already at 12.36%, with a 41.5% vote-by-mail return rate. In another strong Republican county, Collier, the overall turnout rate is 11.12%, with a 51.3% vote-by-mail return rate. In Republican leaning Hernando County, the turnout rate is 10.75%, with a vote-by-mail return rate of 54.2%. If we compare these numbers to strong Democratic counties like Broward (3.91% overall, 24.3% VBM ), Palm Beach (2.55% overall, 14.9% VBM) and Orange (4.09% overall, 21.2% VBM), we can see why the Republicans have an advantage.

As far as a county-by-county analysis, there are no real changes from yesterday’s analysis. Sarasota and Pasco counties continue to possibly be bellwether counties on Election Night. Republicans and Democrats are still even in Hillsborough County. In Duval County, Democrats continue to under-perform. The only notable change is that Seminole, Indian River, and St. Lucie counties have seen a directional swing from a Democratic advantage to a Republican advantage, but not too large of a swing.

It should be noted in this analysis that voter registration does not equate to vote choice (ask anyone in North Florida). Therefore, these numbers should just be examined only within the scope of voter registration turnout.

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