New York, Oct 27 | More than 3.2 per cent of the registered voters in the state of New York have already cast their ballots in the early voting for the November 3 US presidential election.
This is the first time that the state has offered in-person voting prior to Election Day, reports Xinhua news agency.
A total of 422,166 people cast their ballots at early voting sites across the state on the weekend, over 3.2 per cent of the nearly 13 million registered voters statewide, an unofficial tally by the state Board of Elections revealed on Monday.
The heavy turnout led to long lines in densely populated areas, including New York City, where some voters waited for several hours to cast their ballots.
Altogether 193,915 votes were cast in New York City during the weekend, or 46 per cent of the statewide total, according to the tally.
New York’s early voting period started on October 24 and will run through November 1, according to the schedule released by the state government.
There will be no early voting on November 2.
In the 2016 presidential election, New York ranked the 41st in the country for voter turnout, with just more than 57 per cent of the eligible population casting their ballots.
The state improved its turnout ranking by three spots compared to the 2012 election.
Nationwide, early voting rates have dramatically surged this year, as President Donald Trump and his Democratic rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, campaigned for the White House.
According to media reports, until October 25, 58 million voters had cast their ballots across the country, and up to 150 million others would turn out to vote this year, a record high in the past decades.