Illinois residents are registering to vote and casting their ballots early in record numbers.
The Illinois State Board of Elections reports more than 8 million people have registered to vote, which is higher than the amount in the 2016 Presidential election. Spokesman Matt Dietrich says there’s also been a rise in early voting.
“Right now we’ve got close to 750,000 early votes cast," he said. "If that keeps up, we’ll definitely surpass the number that we saw in 2014, which was 791,000. But it’s also possible that we could have more early votes cast than we saw in 2016.”
Dietrich says that would be significant, because the 2016 election had a turnout of more than 70%. In addition, early voting has expanded because lawmakers extended it from the two weeks before an election to a full forty days. The election itself takes place Nov. 6.
Nov. 1 is the last day for the election authority to receive an application by mail for a vote by mail ballot from any registered voter.