Howard School Building, site of early voting.

Nashvillians made a strong close to early voting to finish above 2019’s totals, with 57,461 people casting early ballots.

As of early last week, Davidson County’s early voting turnout was slow, with less than half of the 2019 turnout numbers. At the Green Hills location, a few candidates said the voters that did show up had made up their minds, and a volunteer called the turnout “horrifying.” 

The first week of early voting saw the small percentage of Nashville able to decide from among 8 main mayoral candidates, 22 At-Large candidates, and sometimes even 4 candidates in district council races. Where was the rest of Nashville, or the 63,157 new eligible registered voters since the last mayoral election?

In early July, former mayor Bill Purcell told the Banner, “I’m still as undecided as most Nashvillians.” That sentiment echoed into continued indecision and low turnout at the start of early voting. 

But Tuesday of last week brought a spike, with turnout numbers rising above 4,000. Thursday almost doubled Wednesday’s turnout. And Friday and Saturday kept rising until voter turnout reached almost 9,000. The polling locations maintained the same ranking, with Green Hills Library and Belle Meade City Hall still holding first, but five locations caught up and went from behind their 2019 pace to surpass it. The full rundown of 2019 and 2023 early voting by early voting location is below. 

A similar increase occurred in the last three days of early voting in 2019, but this year brought 8,746 more early votes cast in 2019. About 13.88 percent of total registered voters participated in early voting this year, compared to 12.18 percent in 2019. 

Addison Wright, a Nashville native, is a student-athlete (swimming) at UNC Asheville, where she's double majoring in Mass Communications and Political Science in the class of 2024.