Ramsey County provides data about voter turnout and registration, voting before Election Day and election judges. The charts and graphs below show trends in these areas over time. Visit the elections and voting page for additional resources.
Voter turnout and registration
Voting over time
This graphic illustrates the contrast between voter turnout in presidential, midterm and Saint Paul local elections over time. Midterm participation declined between 2002 and 2014 but significantly increased in 2018. If this trend continues, Ramsey County may see 300,000 ballots cast for the 2020 presidential election, a threshold that hasn't been crossed in previous elections.
In 2018, Ramsey County set a goal to register 10,000 additional voters between spring 2018 and spring 2019 in an effort to reach 311,000 total registered voters.
Annual goals are set to register eligible and new voters, educate citizens on the voting process and inform voters of their options. Staff use a variety of voter engagement initiatives to achieve these goals.
Note: At the start of each year, the state performs voter registration list maintenance as required by law. This results in a decrease in voter registration numbers.
Election Day registration
Historically, registration on Election Day is higher during presidential election years. However, in 2016, Election Day registration declined due to a new option to register online before Election Day. During a single day in October 2016, more than 73,000 Minnesotans took advantage of the new registration method, setting a record dating back to the launch of online registration in 2013. Review the Election Day registration fact sheet.
Voting before Election Day
Pre-election voting, also referred to as absentee voting, begins 46 days before Election Day. Absentee ballots are counted and reported on election night.
The Minnesota legislature passed the no excuse absentee voting law in 2014, allowing Minnesotans to cast their pre-election ballot without an approved reason or excuse. Pre-election voting increased dramatically across Ramsey County in 2016, and we predict it will continue to rise in the coming years.
Pre-election voting by type
The pre-election voting period begins 46 days before Election Day. Voters can receive their ballot through the mail during this period and return it to Ramsey County through 3 p.m. on Election Day.
Voters also have the option to vote in-person before Election Day at a designated voting location. Visit the Vote Before Election Day page for more information.
Election judges are hired and trained each year. Their assistance is vital to administering successful election activities. In addition to working on Election Day, election judges serve voters throughout the year in other areas including administrative support, voter engagement, early and in-person absentee voting, health care facility voting, absentee ballot count center and voting equipment preparation.
Election Day assignments
This graph shows the number of election judges assigned to work on Election Day for every election Ramsey County has administered since 2017. Special elections may only need ten election judges while countywide elections need over 1,500.