Early voting is almost at 2016 levels in Minnesota

This is highly unusual for a non-presidential election.
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Minnesota is good at voting, and it looks like Tuesday's mid-terms will be no exception.

Early voting numbers nationally suggest a significantly higher turnout in these elections than those seen in 2014, and the number of votes already cast in Minnesota almost rivals the early turnout in the 2016 elections.

The Secretary of State's office says that as of Monday morning, 539,806 absentee ballots have been accepted, which is a 129 percent increase on the number of early ballots cast in 2014, the first year all Minnesotans were allowed to vote early.

It's just shy of the 586,196 who voted early in the 2016 presidential elections, when turnout is usually significantly greater than it is for mid-terms.

Secretary of State Steve Simon says that the early voting figures put Minnesota on track once again to be the state with the highest voting turnout in the nation.

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Youth vote could be critical

The early voting stats are being replicated across the country, with one of the standout talking points so far ahead of Tuesday's mid-terms being the likely increase in the youth vote.

So far, 2.3 million Americans under 30 have cast a ballot already this year, compared to just over 1 million by the same time in 2014.

And the Washington Post reports that 40 percent of 18-29 year olds polled have said they will "definitely vote" in the midterms.

That might not sound like much, but consider it in the context that the overall turnout in the 2014 mid-terms was just 36.4 percent, and the under 30 vote that same year was just 21 percent.

This youth vote could potentially prove significant in swing districts, with younger voters more likely to vote Democrat than Republican.

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A poll by Bloomberg found that the most important issues to Generation Z (those born mid-90s to the early 2000s) are gun control, climate change and rising suicide rates.

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