9/23/20: ALMOST 14 % OF N.C. REGISTERED VOTERS HAVE REQUESTED ABSENTEE MAIL-IN BALLOTS, STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS REPORTS.

Southern Shores has a homeowner in the race: Democrat Tommy Fulcher, of Ginguite Trail, is running for the District 6 seat in the N.C. House of Representatives, which includes Dare, Currituck, Hyde, and Pamlico counties. (The Beacon makes no endorsements in partisan elections. In the past 30 years, we are not aware of any Southern Shores residents having run for state office.)

As of yesterday, 971,631 registered North Carolina voters—almost 14 percent of all registered voters in the state —had requested absentee ballots for the 2020 general election, according to the N.C. State Board of Elections, which updates online the number of requests daily.

With North Carolina being the first state in the nation to mail out absentee ballots—they started going out Sept. 4—the Nov. 3 election is well under way here, even though early voting does not begin until Oct. 15. (It runs through Oct. 31.)

As of Sept. 11, according to the N.C. Policy Watch, 23,443 ballots had already been returned. See http://www.ncpolicywatch.com/2020/09/14/requests-for-absentee-ballots-up-1400-from-2016/

Election analysts believe that at least half of the U.S. electorate will vote by mail or early in person because of voters’ reluctance to show up at crowded polling places in November and risk exposure to COVID-19.

There are 7,153,476 registered voters in North Carolina, according to the State Board of Elections, which is fulfilling requests for absentee ballots on a rolling basis—essentially, in the order in which they are received.

See the State Board’s website for any election information you may need: https://www.ncsbe.gov/.

To request an absentee ballot, see https://votebymail.ncsbe.gov/app/home.

To check the status of your mail-in ballot, see https://northcarolina.ballottrax.net/voter/.

I returned my ballot on Monday and was able to ascertain on the “Ballot Trax” website that the U.S. Postal Service has sent it to the Dare County Board of Elections office. I will check back to ensure that the BOE has received and registered it.

Ann G. Sjoerdsma, 9/23/20

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