The window to request an absentee ballot closed Thursday, but more than half a million Hoosiers had already requested to vote by mail in the upcoming election.
A report from the Secretary of State’s office shows 559,749 people requested to vote by mail in Indiana for the Nov. 3 election. Just 155,584 Hoosiers requested to vote by mail in 2016.
The current number also surpassed the 546,716 Hoosiers who requested to vote by mail for the 2020 primary.
Gov. Eric Holcomb and Indiana Republicans expanded access to absentee voting for that primary but refused to do so again for the general election, arguing it was unnecessary because Indiana was no longer under a stay-at-home order.
In Marion County, the state’s largest county by population, 99,521 people requested to vote absentee by mail. Just 19,578 people voted by mail in the county in the 2016 general election; however, 124,163 requested to do the same for the June 2 primary.
Patrick Becker, interim director of Marion County’s election board, said the county and state are seeing mail-in requests “that we’ve literally never seen before.”
In fact, Marion County has had some difficulty delivering ballots to voters. Residents have reported not receiving requested ballots, and the county said it does not know where about 600 ballots have gone.
In all, 933,681 Hoosiers had voted in the 2020 general election as of Friday.