County clerk discusses early voting turnout in Jackson County, Ill.

Early & Mail-in Ballots in Jackson Co.

MURPHYSBORO, Ill. (KFVS) - Early voting began on September 24 in Illinois. Voting turnout in Jackson County has been high, according to County Clerk Frank Byrd.

“We’ve already seen 1500 people vote early. And almost 2,000 vote by mail returned," Byrd said.

That’s for this election year, but how does that compare to past election years?

“If we go back to the 2016 presidential race, we had about 7,300 people vote early, that was the total," Byrd said. "We had about 974 people that did the vote by mail. And then in 2018 we had 5,500 people that voted early and around 1,300 people that voted by mail.”

That is a lot of numbers to digest but bottom-line, early voting may surpass those previous two elections.

“I think we’re going to see higher numbers than we have in the past, only because of COVID-19, especially with the vote by mail," he said.

According to Byrd, the county’s ballot retrieval box is filling up daily.

“The ballot retrieval box, we’re having about 100 ballots put in those a day, so I mean that’s quite a bit.”

Byrd said voting registration has also gone up in Jackson County.

“It was like 31,000 people were registered to vote. Now, we’re up to 38,000 people that’s registered to vote.”

Numbers are expected to rise, as early voting in the biggest city in Jackson County has not begun.

“Think early voting, we haven’t even started in Carbondale yet that’s going to bring in a significant amount of increase.”

The last day to register to vote in Illinois is October 18, with the final day of early voting coming November 2.

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