Elections BC has updated its estimate of voter turnout in the B.C. provincial election from 52.4 per cent to 54.5 per cent of registered voters.
According to Elections BC, the updated estimate is based on the number of registered voters at the close of general voter registration on Sept. 26 and the number of valid votes and rejected ballots cast at all voting opportunities.
Voters in B.C. can register when they vote so the number of registers on Election Day, which was Oct. 24, will not be known until the post-election processing is complete. Elections BC will report the final turnout rate for 2020 at that time.
A total of 1,900,353 voters voted in the provincial election, according to Elections BC.
This was 86,021 fewer than in the 2017 Provincial General Election, when 1,986,374 voters cast a ballot, but it was the second-highest total in B.C. electoral history.
A record 724,279 voters requested vote-by-mail packages in 2020 and 596,287 voters returned their package by the close of voting, a return rate of 82.3 per cent.
The return rate does not account for voters who requested a vote-by-mail package but decided to vote in person. That figure it still being determined and will be reported on in the Chief Electoral Officer’s report for the election, set to be released in 2021. In the 2017 provincial election, 6,517 voters voted by mail, 57.8 per cent of packages issued for that election.
This was the first election in B.C. in which more voters voted before Election Day than on Election Day.
- In 2017, 30.2 per cent of total votes cast were done during advance voting. In 2020, that number increased to 35.4 per cent.
- In 2017, the percentage of total votes that were done by mail was just 0.3 per cent. In 2020, the year of the pandemic, the percentage was 31.4 per cent.
- In 2017, the percentage of total votes that were done by absentee voting was 8.7 per cent, compared to 4.4 per cent in 2020.
- In 2017, the percentage of total votes that were cast on Election Day was 60.8 per cent. In 2020, the percentage was 28.8 per cent.
The final Statement of Votes for the election will be available in the Chief Electoral Officer’s election report.