Many of Louisiana’s record number of early votes due to mail-in ballots

Updated: Oct. 28, 2020 at 5:38 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Early voting in Louisiana is officially over. If you didn’t cast your ballot, you’ll now have to wait until Election Day on Nov. 3.

Nearly a million people early voted for this election, compared to about 500,000 in the 2016 presidential election.

Some of those record high numbers can be attributed to mail-in ballots, with nearly 150,000 sent so far.

It’s not so much that we’re scared to go inside, I can’t risk getting sick," Vivian McCalman says.

She says it is a luxury for her and boyfriend, Jeremy Rhodes, to leave home due to her compromised immune system, but they were still determined to cast their votes.

“We were just talking about this the other night we were just like if we don’t vote in this election. We are going to be so angry at each other because it’s an important election,” McCalman says.

According to the registrar of voters, mail-in ballots for most voters must be physically received by 4:30 p.m. on Nov. 2. For voters in the military, overseas, or in the hospital, mail-in ballots must be received no later than 8 p.m. (close of polls) on Election Day (Nov. 3). Postmark dates are not considered with any mail-in ballots.

Ballots not physically received by the above-noted dates will not be counted.

"It’s not so much that we’re scared to go inside, I can’t risk getting sick,“ McCalman explains.

With record high early voting numbers, it is clear being counted is a top priority for millions of Americans.

”I did my part I did probably the most American thing which is to vote in an election and I’m proud of that," Rhodes says.

The US. Postal Service’s recommended deadline to get your ballot in the mailbox has already passed, but you can still drop off your absentee ballot in person to your parish’s registrar of voter’s office by the deadline.

Voters can still request an absentee ballot through October 30.

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