Politics
12:03 pm
Sun November 4, 2012

Crowds Flock To The Polls As Early Voting Ends

There were long lines at polling stations Saturday on the final day of early voting statewide. About 2.7 million voters cast early or absentee ballots in North Carolina this year. That’s about 41 percent of the state’s 6.6 million registered voters, according to the N.C. Board of Elections.

In Mecklenburg County, about 270,000 people voted early, with the heaviest turnouts on the final two days – Friday and Saturday, the Mecklenburg Board of Elections reported.  More than 20,000 people voted both days, which topped the final two days of voting in the 2008 election in the county.

Statewide, about 48 percent of early voters were Democrats, 32 percent Republicans, 21 percent unaffiliated. Republicans were slightly ahead of their early voting pace in the last presidential election, in 2008, while Democrats were slightly behind.

OBAMA CAMPAIGN FOCUSES ON NC

As the presidential campaign winds down, a couple of political VIPs will be in North Carolina to stump for President Barack Obama over the next two days.

Former President Clinton is scheduled to speak at a rally Sunday afternoon at Raleigh's Pullen Park.  Clinton, who never won North Carolina, has been traveling to several battleground states over the past week.  

Meanwhile, First lady Michelle Obama will be in Charlotte on Monday – election eve. She’ll speak to supporters Monday afternoon at Charlotte Douglas airport 

GOVERNOR CANDIDATES HEAD EAST

The major party candidates for governor were in eastern North Carolina on the final day of early voting Saturday. Democratic Lieutenant Governor Walter Dalton visited an early-voting site Saturday morning in Greenville, while Republican Pat McCrory was across town attending an East Carolina University football game tailgate party.  The former Charlotte mayor leads in the polls while Dalton was seeking to boost early-vote turnout that appeared to be benefitting Democrats.

Polls will be open on Election Day Tuesday in North Carolina from 6:30am to 7:30pm.