Visits by Bill and Hillary Clinton haven’t boosted early voting in New York

Former President Bill Clinton campaigned on behalf of New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) this past Saturday while his wife did the same last week.

However, early voting numbers published by the New York Post on Monday suggest that those efforts may be too little, too late.

Numbers show far less early voting than in 2020

The paper noted that as of Sunday, the number of people who had voted early in Democrat-leaning New York City represented just 38.6% of the total number who voted early in the 2020 election.

Early voting was particularly light in the Bronx, an area of the city that overwhelmingly votes for Democrats. Only 39,069 residents had voted there as of Sunday, which was just 3,000 more than voted in Staten Island despite the latter having one-third of the Bronx’s population.

What’s more, a recent Forbes article reported that Democrats are more likely than Republicans to take advantage of early voting opportunities.

Lee Zeldin is Hochul’s Republican challenger, and he said the relatively low early voting numbers don’t bode well for the incumbent.

“It’s a big issue for Hochul, I don’t know if she’s gonna be able to recover from this tomorrow. The turnout in certain areas where she was expecting a higher turnout just wasn’t there,” Zeldin told the Post.

“We’ve seen the enthusiasm gap for a while — it’s shown themselves in different respects,” the GOP gubernatorial contender continued. “While she was rallying a few days ago with Hillary Clinton and Kamala Harris, we had 10 times as many people showing up at a rally in the capital region.”

Democratic strategist says race has become “a jump ball”

“There’s clearly a big energy gap and enthusiasm gap between the two campaigns. She just didn’t get the numbers that she needed from some of these boroughs,” Zeldin insisted.

“There are certain groups inside of the boroughs that just didn’t show up. And we’re not seeing anything today that is lighting a fuse amongst those people who had just not shown up,” he concluded.

Political consultant Hank Sheinkop agreed that the early voting figures suggest a “mediocre” level of enthusiasm among Democrats, stating, “Zeldin has a higher possibility of winning based on these numbers.”

An unnamed Democratic strategist concurred, saying that the relatively low turnout among early voters has transformed the race into “a jump ball.”