The many ways we know 2020 will be a banner year for voting

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2020 has been an exceptional year, and the presidential election will be, too. | Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images

There are lots of reasons besides voter registration to believe voter turnout will be high.

Ahead of this year’s presidential election, several states including battlegrounds like Texas, Pennsylvania, and Ohio are approaching or passing voter registration records. But don’t break out the champagne to celebrate democracy just yet. Voter registration totals are not a very good or meaningful indicator of how many people will actually vote. There are, however, a number of other indicators that suggest 2020 will be a banner year for voter turnout.

As the country continues to grapple with the pandemic, this election season is proving to be an exceptional one. The ways in which people are voting, for instance, are far from typical. Some 80 million Americans could cast their ballots by mail, and already a record 22 million have voted early. And while the battle between Donald Trump and Joe Biden is attracting the most attention, state and local elections are seeing record levels of fundraising. An influx of new voters would surely mix things up even more.


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