Local Politics

More than half a million absentee ballots collected so far in North Carolina

Posted October 14, 2020 7:52 a.m. EDT
Updated October 14, 2020 12:27 p.m. EDT

— More than half a million absentee ballots have been cast and collected in North Carolina as of Tuesday, according to the State Board of Elections.

Only around 47,000 absentee ballots had been cast during the same time frame in 2016, showing just how many North Carolinians are taking advantage of voting by mail during the coronavirus pandemic.

A majority of ballots cast early were from registered Democrats, according to elections officials. Seventeen percent of ballots already collected were from registered Republicans, and more than 30 percent were from unaffiliated voters.

More than 8,000 people who cast their ballot were overseas, according to election officials. A little more than 3,000 members of the military have voted absentee so far.

North Carolina has more than 7.2 million registered voters. About a third of them aren't affiliated with any party. Nearly 36 percent are registered Democrats, and 30 percent are registered Republicans.

Wake County election officials have collected the most absentee ballots in the state so far, at more than 74,000. Mecklenburg County voters have had more than 66,000 of their absentee ballots collected.

Anyone who plans to vote by mail must request an absentee ballot by Oct. 27 and fill it out carefully, making sure to obtain the required witness information, before sending it in. Ballots will take several days at least to be counted.

Less than 1% of absentee ballots are not counted, and most of those are due to voter error. The State Board of Elections has a tool to track the status of mailed ballots.

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