The Republican Party of Duval County knows now how far behind it is in the turnout battle.
With early voting wrapped up and a total of 297,616 Duval County voters having made their choices, Democratic turnout outpaced that of Republicans by a margin of 126,687 to 122,464. An additional 48,465 NPA voters have turned out thus far.
In Duval pre-Election Day voting, 42.5 percent of voters are Democrats, 41.1 percent are Republicans, and NPA voters comprise the additional 16.4 percent.
And turnout at the end of the early voting period is 50.6 percent — an unprecedented number and a signal of a shift in voting patterns among both parties.
The Democrats were aggressive in GOTV, bringing Bill Clinton through via bus to thank a small crowd of supporters, and having former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley and Rev. Jesse Jackson participate in GOTV efforts over the weekend.
The Democrats finally took the lead in early voting on Saturday, which (for what it’s worth) underperformed the Democratic machine in the 2015 mayoral race, which saw Democrats take the early voting lead on the last Friday of early voting.
If Republicans or other skeptics are looking for signs of depressed turnout among the Democratic base, they may find them there.
Monday sees Republican campaigns making their play for Election Day turnout, which typically swings GOP.
On Monday morning, Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams and Mayor Lenny Curry will swing by the Marco Rubio office and “thank volunteers.”
On Monday afternoon, Dr. Ben Carson visits the Donald Trump HQ at 3428 Beach Blvd.