Record number of votes cast in IL 2020 election; state certifies results

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(File: Nexstar)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — The Illinois State Board of Elections today certified the results of the Nov. 3 General Election, which featured the highest statewide turnout since 1992 and set records for total number of votes cast and total registered voters.

Despite being held amid the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 General Election saw 6,098,729
voters cast ballots, exceeding the 2016 total of 5,666,118, which was a record at the time. There were
a record 8,364,099 active registered voters eligible to participate in the election, surpassing the 2016
record of 8,029,847.

Turnout was 72.92 percent, the highest statewide voter turnout since the 1992 general
Election’s 78.24 percent and more than 2 percentage points higher than in 2016. (See chart below for
recent turnout figures.)

Official vote totals for the 2020 general elections can be found on the SBE website’s Election
Results page.


As the coronavirus pandemic intensified following the March 17 primary, the Illinois General
Assembly passed an election bill that enacted many special provisions to ensure a safe General
Election for voters and poll workers.

Chief among these was an emphasis on voting by mail that resulted in a record number of Illinois voters casting ballots without entering a polling place.

Likewise, promotion of early voting to mitigate potential Election Day crowding led to an
unprecedented number of votes cast during Illinois’ 40-day early voting period.

Based on pre-election ballot reports, SBE estimates that the total statewide vote was split
roughly evenly between early voting, voting by mail and in-person voting on Election Day, each
accounting for about 2 million votes. Board staff is currently collecting data from the state’s 108 local
election authorities that will provide a more precise summary of voting trends in the 2020 general
election. That data will be submitted to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission in early 2021 for
inclusion in the Election Administration and Voting Survey.

“The strong turnout in this election is a testament to the voters of Illinois and the state’s 108
local election authorities,” said SBE Executive Director Steve Sandvoss. “Amid a historic public health crisis that presented a formidable obstacle, the election community statewide rose to the occasion.”

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