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Primary election voter turnout already pacing ahead of 2016 in Washington state

(AP Photo/John Froschauer, File)

Turnout for Washington state’s 2020 primary election is already trending ahead of 2016’s total with ballots continuing to flow in.

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“It is going great,” Secretary of State Kim Wyman told KTTH’s Jason Rantz Show. “We are tracking higher than 2016 at the same point, almost in some cases doubling what the turnout was that year.

By Aug, 1, 2016, Washington had a 17.5% ballot turn-in rate. On that same date in 2020, turnout was at 27.6%. When it’s all said and done, Wyman expects voter turnout for the primary to finish up around 60%. That would mark a significant increase over 2016’s 35% mark.

Wyman points to data showing voter participation outperforming in Eastern Washington counties.

“Smaller counties tend to have much higher turnout and voter participation, but they’re small, so you don’t necessarily always notice that,” she noted.

She also expects a large portion of ballots to flood in just before the Tuesday deadline, with most voters waiting until the last week before election day. On average, 20% of the total returns arrive at election offices on each day during election week, since many are postmarked before Tuesday’s deadline, but don’t arrive until later.

You can find a ballot dropbox near you up until 8 p.m., when voting is officially closed. If you drop it in a mailbox, remember that it must be postmarked no later than Election Day.

Dropbox locations in Western Washington can be found below.

King County locations

Kitsap County locations

Pierce County locations

Skagit County locations

Snohomish County locations

Thurston County locations

MyNorthwest will host live election results starting at 8 p.m. on Election Night.

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