Early voting has ended for the October 14 primary election. In Red River, only 583 early votes were cast. This election covers Governor, Senator, Sheriff, at least one Police Jury district, Constitutional Amendments, and more. This turnout is nearly half of what other elections of similar offices in the past three elections.
A breakdown of the voting indicates that 440 in-person and 143 absentee ballots were cast so far. Most of the early voting was from District 7, with 143 ballots, and District 1, with 95 ballots. More females have voted than males, and more whites have voted than blacks or others. Republican and democrat votes are almost equal. Mail-in ballots are accepted until election day.
In contrast, 1071 early ballots were completed four years ago, and 8 years ago, 1528 early ballots were cast. This contrast is a direct result of the quiet election that is happening in Red River this term. Equally puzzling is that early voting in the past has been a typically democratic party favorite in this parish. Unlike this election, more than 2 thirds of early votes have been from Democrats. The trend for females to complete early voting has continued and has increased for the past 16 years.
The election on October 14 will be the deciding factor. Has the shift to voting at the poll become the favored site for Red River? Will this be the return of voting at neighborhood precincts, or will this just be a low turnout for Red River?
As a citizen, the right to vote needs to be exercised in every election. Go to the polls on October 14. Everyone VOTE!