Today is Election Day (Tuesday, November 3rd) across the nation with millions of voters headed to the polls. High pressure will control the weather over most of the nation, leading to tranquil weather conditions. The Northwest and and Northeast will have some precipitation, while most areas from the West to South will be dry.
Lingering snow showers and chilly temperatures will move across a few areas in the Northeast on the backside of a fast moving low pressure center. Precipitation amounts and coverage should be minimal.
SOUTH / SOUTHEAST
Dry high pressure will lead to tranquil weather conditions across the South and Southeast. Temperatures will be near average to above normal.
Temperatures will be warming through the Upper Midwest, Great Lakes, and Ohio Valley. Dry weather conditions are expected for Election Day.
A storm system will approach the Pacific Northwest, bringing areas of rain to the region and snow in the higher elevations. A surface trough ahead of a cold front will bring the first wave of moisture.
High pressure centered near the Four Corners will bring dry and mild weather conditions to the Southwest. A few sprinkles or brief showers are possible in northern California.
Does the weather affect elections? A 2007 study posted in the Journal of Politics regarding voter turnout states “political scientists have provided little systematic evidence to substantiate this claim”. The study showed a small amount of voters chose to not vote in a few past presidential elections when unsettled weather was in the area.
[Estimates of the number of potential voters who opted not to vote as a result of precipitation. From the Journal of Politics, August 2007]
The study took a look at partisan bias and concluded “our results clearly indicate that Republican candidates benefit electorally from the turnout-depressing effects of bad weather”, using the close presidential elections of 1960 and 2000 as examples. The study says “we have shown that bad weather may affect electoral outcomes by significantly decreasing Democratic presidential vote share, to the benefit of Republicans.”
In opposition, an article published in Bloomberg says “there’s not much evidence that rain on Election Day helps predicts the winner”. Although it did state that “the weather may have clear impact on is the mood of voters” commenting that “rain makes voters less willing to take risks, dampening enthusiasm for third-party candidates. It also darkens their mood.”
Don’t forget to vote! To find your polling place, follow this link.