With absentee and early voting set to begin next week in Iowa, a battleground state in the presidential race, Democrats have a 6-1 edge in ballot requests so far, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Democrats requested roughly 100,000 ballots, compared with 16,073 ballots requested by Republicans, the newspaper said. Absentee voting and in-person early voting begins on Sept. 27.
"I see the early vote numbers, and I grimace a little bit," said Craig Robinson, a former political director of the Iowa Republican Party and the editor of a popular blog, told The Journal. "It feels like an Obama state…. The president has been more accessible to voters than [Mitt] Romney and [Paul] Ryan."
In North Carolina, however, Republicans have requested nearly 7,000 more absentee ballots than Democrats out of almost 50,000 requests, state officials said.
Just under 30 percent of all ballots cast in the 2008 presidential election were submitted or filled out before Election Day. Analysts at the U.S. Election Assistance Commission expect that nearly a third of all ballots in the 2012 election will be filled out ahead of time—either through in-person early voting, absentee ballots, or overseas posts by military personnel. Almost 17 percent of the vote in 2008 was through mail-in absentee ballots. Thirteen percent came from in-person early voting (doubling the 2004 turnout of 6.4 percent).