North Carolina voters are the first of what’s expected to be more than a third of Americans who will vote long before Election Day 2016.
An Associated Press analysis found that 50 to 75 percent of the vote is expected be cast early in the presidential battleground states of Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Nevada, and North Carolina.
Roughly 35 percent of electorate voted early in 2012, the AP reported, and the percentage is expected to be higher this year.
North Carolina on Friday began absentee ballots by mail and ballots will be mailed to military service members beginning next week. Polling booths open Oct. 20. Polls show a tight race between Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump, and there are also close races for governor and Sen. Richard M. Burr’s seat this year.
In Arizona, a presidential battleground and also where Sen. John McCain is in a tough re-election race, polls open on Oct. 12. Matt Roberts, communications director for the secretary of state’s office, which handles elections, told CNBC, “At the end of the first two weeks, 80 percent of all of the state’s votes are in.”