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'Heavy Turnout' For Early Voting With 3 Weeks To Go

Nearly 1,700 McLean County voters have already cast their ballots for the midterm election—a heavy turnout for early voting with three weeks to go before Election Day.

The Bloomington Election Commission handles voting in the City of Bloomington; the McLean County clerk’s office runs voting for Normal and the rest of the county. 

The county clerk’s office has seen 699 early voters since it opened Sept. 27, said Director of Elections Denise Cesario. It saw 813 early voters during the entire 2016 general election, she said, a sign that this year’s high turnout may rival a presidential election year. 

The Bloomington Election Commission has seen 981 early voters so far, said BEC Assistant Director Carrie Robinson. 

“The turnout has been heavy,” Robinson said. 

Others are choosing to vote by mail. The BEC and county clerk have together sent out 3,683 vote-by-mail ballots, and at least 825 have already been returned, according to Cesario and Robinson. 

Voters seem energized, but it’s unclear whether turnout will actually rise locally as a result. For every 10 adults eligible to vote, only about four cast a ballot in the 2010 and 2014 midterm elections.

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Ryan Denham is the digital content director for WGLT.
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