Secretary of State William F. Galvin is predicting record voter turnout in Tuesday's election because of a competitive race for governor, major Republican challenges to the state's all-Democratic congressional delegation, and strong GOP candidates for two open state constitutional offices.
Galvin said he expects 2.4 million registered voters, a non-presidential year turnout that has not been seen since 1990, when the state faced a similar economic and political climate.
''We are expecting a very exciting election,'' Galvin said.
Galvin said he based his prediction on the number of absentee ballots that have already been cast. As of today, more than 132,000 voters have filled out ballots. In January, when 2.25 million voters went to the polls to chose a new US senator, 107,000 absentee ballots were cast.
If 2.4 million voters turn out, it will be more than 57 percent of the 4,190,907 voters registered.
Galvin said, unlike in the January special election, in which a higher proportion of Republicans had voted absentee, a large number of Democrats are voting early. Independents, who make up over half the voting population, have cast more absentee ballots than voters of either party.
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