Skip to main content

1 in 10 eligible Minnesota voters have already sent in a ballot

In 2012, the state had just 183,000 ballots by this time. This year, it's a lot more.

More than 400,000 Minnesotans have already voted.

The state has accepted 415,000 absentee ballots so far, the Secretary of State Steve Simon tweeted Thursday morning. That's about 10 percent of the 4 million or so people who are eligible to vote.

Simon also pointed out that, at this time in 2012 (the most recent presidential election), the state had accepted just 183,000 ballots.

And in a follow-up tweet, he again credited what's called no excuse absentee voting for the high figures.

Four years ago, in order to vote absentee you had to prove you physically couldn't get to a polling place. But in 2013, state lawmakers approved no excuse absentee voting – meaning any voter in Minnesota could cast a ballot absentee, for any reason. Even just "I feel like it."

2016 is the first presidential election in Minnesota with the no excuse absentee voting.

What to expect for turnout

Early voting has been open for weeks now – it's probably too late to request, fill out, and send back an absentee ballot by mail, since it has to be returned by Election Day. But you can still vote early in-person at any county election office (list here) or at one of the special locations set up by cities and towns (list here).

An average of about 2,793,373 Minnesotans have voted in each of the past four presidential election years – which is around three-quarters of total eligible voters. Presidential elections generally have higher voter turnout than the midterm elections (when only senators and representatives are up for a vote).

If that's about how many Minnesotans vote in 2016, about 14 percent of them have already cast a ballot absentee.

Here's a look at general election turnout since 2000, from the Secretary of State's Office.

To find news, commentary, and local events leading up to the 2016 election, head to Go Vote MN.

Next Up

walz flanagan lorie shaull flickr

Gov. proposes 'Walz Checks' for most Minnesotans

The governor wants to use $700 million of the state's surplus to fund the payments.

Hutch crash booking photo

Walz, Flanagan call on Hennepin Co. sheriff to resign

"I would say that it is time for him to resign," the Lt. Gov. said.

line 3 enbridge portage lake hubbard county mn tony webster flickr

Months after missing deadline, Enbridge says Line 3 aquifer breach is fixed

The company told Bring Me The News it "successfully stopped the flow of groundwater" at the site.

canada bodies found

Baby, teenager among 4 found dead along MN, Canada border

Authorities believe all four froze to death.

unsplash roller rink skates CROP

Former roller rink, tennis courts will become new sports hub

The Wooddale Fun Zone has been closed since spring of 2020.

hibachi daruma

Popular hibachi food truck opens second Twin Cities restaurant

The much-anticipated Daruma opens for takeout Thursday evening.

20211128_Vikings_49ers_REG12_0144 (1)

What changes are coming to the Vikings' offensive line?

Once again, Minnesota has work to do to figure out its interior spots

Kris Ehresmann

One of Minnesota's key COVID-19 leaders is retiring

Kris Ehresmann has given more than 30 years of her life to public health in Minnesota.

summit beach park orono

Plan to develop Orono park on hold after Daytons object

The Dayton family donated the land to the city for the park in the 1970s.

covid nurse doctor hospital wikimedia commons

Child from Twin Cities, school staff member die from COVID

Both deaths were reported by the Minnesota Department of Health Thursday.

snow

3 clippers will deliver snow to Minnesota through Tuesday

Clippers move through Friday night, Saturday night and again Monday.

Related

Get that absentee ballot mailed back in if you haven't yet

That ballot needs to be in by Election Day, or it won't count.

Writing in 'Bernie Sanders' or 'Ted Cruz' on your ballot won't be counted

Just because you write someone in, doesn't mean it's always counted.

Wow, Facebook: Their voter registration reminder really worked

Facebook's reminder got a lot of Minnesotans to register to vote.

Live updates: Checking in on Election Day

Checking in on Minnesota – and the country – as Election Days rolls on.

What's going on with the Minnesota House and Senate?

While national lawmakers jockey for control of the U.S. House and Senate, Minnesota also has its own legislature to worry about.

The FBI says it will review emails in Clinton case it didn't know about before

The FBI is going to be looking at more Hillary Clinton emails.

Facebook's new endorse a candidate feature is a glorified status update

Because what we all need is more chances to talk politics in Facebook comments.

The next day: Hillary Clinton speaks about the results

Even though Donald Trump is headed for the presidency, there are a number of Minnesota races that weren't called Tuesday night.