Why are Americans voting early?

Graeme BruceBusiness Data Journalist
October 21, 2020, 5:52 PM UTC

A plurality (45%) of voters who have already voted, or plan on voting, before election day say they did so to avoid crowds, according to the latest Yahoo News / YouGov Poll 

Other top reasons were convenience (42%) and avoiding possible exposure to COVID-19 (40%). Supporters of Democratic nominee for president Joe Biden are nearly three times as likely as President Donald Trump’s supporters to list the virus as a reason for to vote before election day (51% vs. 18%).

Roughly a quarter (27%) of voters are worried about voter suppression and want to make sure their vote is counted, a reason which early Biden voters (29%) and early Trump voters (26%) can largely agree upon. 

Most voters (65%) who plan to cast their ballot on November 3 say they’re doing so because they like the tradition of in-person voting. This is the top reason among both Biden voters (53%) and Trump voters (72%) who are going to vote on Election Day itself. 

Roughly a third (36%) of Election Day voters overall say there’s too much fraud with mail voting and early voting. Roughly the same number (34%) of are worried their advance ballot won’t be counted properly. 

 

Only about three in five voters (57%) trust their state to accurately count all the votes in this year’s election; about one in five (22%) do not, and roughly the same number (21%) are not sure. 

 

See the toplines and crosstabs from this week’s Yahoo News/YouGov Poll    

Methodology: The Yahoo! News survey was conducted by YouGov using a nationally representative sample of 1,583 U.S. registered voters interviewed online between October 16 – 18, 2020. This sample was weighted according to gender, age, race, and education based on the American Community Survey, conducted by the U.S. Bureau of the Census, as well as 2016 Presidential vote, registration status, geographic region, and news interest. The margin of error for the sample was 4.0%