HADLEY, Mass. (WWLP) – On Friday, 1,438,730 Massachusetts voters had already cast their ballots in this year’s election.
According to the Secretary of the Commonwealth, as of 4 p.m. Friday, 30.8 percent of registered voters had already voted. Some, like Mary Kate Farnham from Hadley, who we caught up with as she headed to cast her ballot early, this election is even more special.
It’s her first time ever voting in a presidential election.
“This is my first time voting and I just wanted to get out early while I can, do my part as best I can to get out and vote,” Farnham told 22News.
As a young voter, she told us it’s important for people to vote to potentially see the change they want reflected in the government.
“I feel like younger people, especially if we want to make a change, really have o do our part and get out early and just go out and vote. If you’re not voting you’re not exercising your right as an American citizen,” Farnham continued.
The number of people who have participated in in-person early voting so far in Massachusetts is 472,944. When it comes to ballots returned by mail, 965,786.
67.1 percent of all ballots sent out to voters have been returned by mail, and 32.9 in-person. According to the Secretary of the Commonwealth, early voting is available by mail or in-person and no excuse or reason is required for why you would like to vote early.
This year’s election has proven to be emotional for many voters. We spoke with another early voter who was emotional about casting her ballot early.
“I had tears in my eyes filling it out,” Gwen McClellan told 22News.
We asked her about the reason behind her emotions, “Because I get to [early vote]. Look at all these places in the country where voting is obstructed. Where people are standing in line for five, ten hours. Where they’re taking away ballot boxes and putting fake ones in. But here, for some reason, I have the privilege of not being threatened or obstructed,” McClellan continued.
In the seven states, in-person voting remains the only option unless people can provide an approved reason that is not the fear of COVID-19. Those states are Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, South Carolina, Indiana, and New York.
The number of ballots cast right now is equal to 42.6 percent of all ballots cast in the 2016 election.
Early voting continues through October 30.