From The Charlotte Observer: Coronavirus fears spark ‘striking surge’ of mail-in ballot requests

A new report shows “a striking surge” in the number of absentee ballot requests in North Carolina, reflecting patterns seen across the country amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

State election officials say as many as four of 10 voters, or more than 1.5 million, could cast mail-in ballots this fall. That’s 10 times the usual number.

Michael Bitzer, a political scientist at Catawba College, analyzed more than 65,000 absentee ballot requests made through Friday. Weeks before ballots are even printed, that’s a four-fold increase from the number requested at the same time in 2016.

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