Elections numbers Wednesday afternoon showed 4.5 million ballots had been cast for a voter turnout so far of 67.7 percent based on more than 6.6 million registered voters in the state.
Wake County had the highest turnout at 81 percent, while Onslow County had the lowest at 52 percent.
State Board of Elections Executive Director Gary Bartlett said he still expected turnout to edge toward 69 percent after mail-in absentee ballots are collected through Friday and provisional ballots are reviewed.
Turnout for the 2008 general election reached more than 69.5 percent — the highest in recent North Carolina political history.
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