Florida's vote-by-mail ballots going out this week

What used to be called 'absentee ballots' should be arriving sooon

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Florida’s 67 supervisors of election are starting to send out vote-by-mail ballots this week, ahead of the November 6th general election. 

As of Wednesday morning, more than 2.5 million voters in the state had requested vote-by-mail ballots.

More than 1 million voters from each major political party have asked for absentee ballots, with slightly more Democrats than Republicans requesting them. 

A half-million voters with no party affiliation will also see ballots in their mailboxes in the coming days. 

So far, more than 4,200 Floridians have already cast their votes, with just under five weeks remaining until Election Day. 

With numerous federal, statewide, and local races on the November ballot as well as 12 proposed constitutional amendments and other local referendums, Leon County Supervisor of Elections Mark Earley says people should take advantage of the options they have to cast their vote prior to Election Day.

“It’s a very long ballot. We don’t want to see lines like have been seen in the past. That’s why we are encouraging people to vote ahead of time," Earley said. "Vote before election day, either by mail or early voting.” 

Earley expects voter turnout for the general election to be significantly higher than the 27.5 percent statewide percentage during last month’s primary.

In that election, more than 1.3 million Floridians cast their ballots by mail, and another 660 thousand voted early. 

This means that more than 56 percent of all votes counted were cast before Election Day.