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With 1.2m ballots in, FL GOP leads Dems by 138,000 in early-absentee votes


There are two ways to look at the pre-Election Day ballots being cast in Florida: compare them to 2012 or 2010.

Republicans would prefer 2012. It was a high watermark for Democrats with Obama at the top of the ticket and, within two days of early in-person voting, they started to eclipse the Republican advantage rolled up after two weeks of absentee voting. Democats wound up with a total 1 percentage point lead, after having trailed by about 6 percentage points.

Democrats would prefer 2010 as a benchmark. It was a high watermark for Republicans, with Marco Rubio at the top of the ticket and, within two days of early in-person voting, Democrats were losing the in-person early vote by 11.3 percentage points in the first two days in this election. Now Democrats are down 0.18 percentage points to Republicans in early votes cast. The absentee margin for Republicans was bigger in 2010 as well: 22 percentage points. Now it’s 12.8 percentage points.

History aside, the advantage is with Gov. Rick Scott right now for a simple reason: More of his people are voting. And the fact is, Democrats pride themselves on doing well in early voting. And they're losing it at the moment.

The big test comes Saturday and Sunday, the first full weekend for early voting, when Democrats tend to flock to the polls.

Here are the numbers as of this morning:

All ballots

Party  All ballots  %
REP     559,133 47%
DEM     421,425 36%
IND     198,423 17%
TOTAL  1,178,981  

Absentee ballots

Party  AB's  %
REP     514,679 48%
DEM     377,159 35%
IND     182,081     17%
Total  1,073,919  

Early vote (in-person) ballots

Party  EV  %
REP       44,454 42%
DEM       44,266 42%
IND       16,342       16%
TOTAL     105,062