On Tuesday, Wisconsin voters came out to the polls — which closed at 8 p.m. CT — and cast their ballots in the 2016 presidential primaries. The race for the White House was close ahead of the Wisconsin primary, with candidates' voter rates fluctuating. Now that polls have closed and the votes are in, how many people voted in the Wisconsin primary?
According to The New York Times, around 1.1 million people voted in the Republican primary while 1 million voted in the Democratic primary. That means roughly 48 percent of Wisconsin's voting age population turned out on Tuesday.
Leading up to the state's primary, Wisconsin's Government Accountability Board predicted that the primaries would see a huge voter turnout of about 40 percent of the state's eligible voters. They also noted that if this were the case, it would be the highest voter turnout in a Wisconsin presidential primary since 1980 when 45 percent of registered voters made their way to the polls. Tuesday's numbers surpassed the Government Accountability Board's prediction and made history.
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee professor Mordecai Lee told Wisconsin Public Radio's The Joy Cardin Show earlier in the day that he expected a voter turnout rate of more than 2 million people. "I think we're going to have lines, not because of technical problems," he said. "It’s just lines of people banging on the doors, 'I want to vote!'"
On the Republican side, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz won with 48.3 percent of the vote to businessman Donald Trump's 35.1 percent. With that 13-point lead, Cruz took 33 delegates with him. Cruz's win prompted a heated statement from the Trump campaign, calling the Texas senator "Lyin' Ted," a "puppet," and a "Trojan horse."
For Democrats, the race leading in to Wisconsin was very close, but ended in a wide margin. Weeks before the Wisconsin primary, frontrunner Hillary Clinton was ahead of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders by a 13-point margin, which closed with Sanders leading Clinton 47.9 percent to 45.3 percent just a day before the primary. One thing is certain, the 1 million voters who cast a ballot in the Democratic primary on Tuesday wanted their voices to be heard. Sanders ultimately won the contest — and pretty early on — also by a 13-point margin, taking 45 delegates with his win. Much like in Arizona, some Bernie supporters called on voters to stay in line even after Sanders was declared Wisconsin's winner, because the more votes he received, the greater the margin, and the more delegates he would be taking with him in his win.
At the end of the night, Wisconsin voters showed up in record numbers, showing the country that they have a voice, and they want it heard.