Maricopa County Recorder Tells Arizonans to Prepare for a ‘Blue Night’ in November Election

Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer shared Monday that voters should be ready for Democrats to initially lead on the night of November 8, as early votes are counted first.

“The results released at 8:00 PM on Election Night will be comprised of early ballots we receive by the weekend before Election Day,” Richer tweeted. “First moral of the story: In Arizona, Initial results will likely be much bluer than eventual final results. Second moral: if you want your ballot to be part of results released AT 8:00 PM on Election Night, return it before the weekend before Election Day.”

He said this would be the case if voting patterns in the upcoming election mirror those seen in the November 2020 and August 2022 elections. The initial tally will likely include primarily early votes, which Richer said are disproportionately Democrat. Yet, once these votes are counted, and recorders move on to day-of-ballot drop-offs and in-person votes, the tide starts to shift, as these votes are primarily Republican.

As The Arizona Sun Times reported, Arizona’s August gubernatorial race showed a situation similar to what Richer described. On election night, Karrin Taylor Robson led Kari Lake by 9.8 percent. However, as more voters were counted, Lake pulled ahead to overtake Robson to become Arizona’s Republican nominee for governor.

Weeks after the August primary, the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors released its canvas of the election results. According to the board, 866,000 voters participated in the primary, roughly 35 percent of Arizona’s over 2 million registered voters, the largest turnout for a primary. Of those who voted, 88 percent did so early. Moreover, 288,000 ballots were cast in person. The counting of votes took 72 hours to complete.

The canvas showed that the majority of ballots cast were Republican at 59 percent, over 10 percent more than Democrats. Independent voter ballots were incorporated in the totals for each party.

Voter registration in Arizona is a nearly even three-way split. According to data from the secretary of state, 1,434,838, or 34.5 percent of voters, are registered Republicans. However, there is less than 1 percent separating the Republican base from the “other” category of voters, who make up 33.7 percent. The other party includes Independents, no party preference, and unrecognized parties. Democrats trail behind the other two at 30.9 percent, and Libertarian voters make up less than 1 percent of registered voters.

More data from the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office revealed a large number of voters changing their party. Of the total 14,055 voters who switched parties in July 2022, the majority moved to the undeclared “Other” category. This category gained 5,566 voters – 1,001 more voters than Republicans gained, and over 2,000 more than Democrats gained. More Democrats – just over 750 – moved to the “Other” category than did Republicans. Moreover, the majority of new voter registrations in July were for the “Other” category.

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Neil Jones is a reporter for The Arizona Sun Times and The Star News Network. Follow Neil on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected].
Background Photo “People Voting” by Ben Schumin. CC BY 3.0.




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4 Thoughts to “Maricopa County Recorder Tells Arizonans to Prepare for a ‘Blue Night’ in November Election”

  1. […] as Khalaf stated, these results were not unexpected. Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer predicted as much in September, and he also predicted momentum would begin to swing in Republicans’ […]

  2. Richard Cunningham

    As a boy back in the early 1930s my mother worked on the election board during every election. We had no computers, no cellphones, no TV and all telephones were on party lines. The election would be held, the poles would close, votes would be counted and turned in. The NEXT morning the results of the election would be broadcast on the radio. Now, with all the “wonderful” electronics, the last election was two years ago and people are still arguing about who won. During my working years, due to my work I had to vote by absentee ballot. It was a case of either going to the poles or voting with an absentee ballot. What do we have now? One screwed up mess because a bunch of idiotic fools voted Socialists (communists) into power to run our country. Voting at one time was just two LEGAL ways to do it. Now what do we have? Fraudulent elections

  3. N Michelena

    I am a MAGA Republican and voting RED