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More than 6.8 million have already voted, suggesting record turnout

The number is roughly 10 times more than the number in 2016 at this time.

Published: October 9, 2020 7:56am

Updated: October 9, 2020 8:04am

More than 6.8 million U.S. voters have already cast ballots as of Friday, less than a month before Election Day, according to early-vote data compiled by the United States Elections Project.

The number is roughly 10 times more than the number in 2016 at this time, according to Reuters.

The project show Florida leading states in early voting, with roughly 1.2 million ballots already cast.

The numbers also suggest the 2020 presidential race between President Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden will result in record-breaking voter turnout. 

Much of the early voting is the result of voters casting mail-in ballots instead of going to crowded polling places amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Michael McDonald, of the University of Florida, who administers the project, predicts, as a result of the early numbers,  a record turnout of about 150 million, representing 65% of eligible voters, the highest rate since 1908.

"We've never seen this many people voting so far ahead of an election," McDonald told Reuters. He also said the early-voting numbers suggest many voters have already decided on a candidate. 

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