After just six days of early voting, more than 10 percent of the state's registered voters have cast their ballots this election, according to State Board of Elections figures.
As of Tuesday evening, 629,266 voters have voted, including 544,000 who cast their ballots in person. The rest have submitted absentee ballots, including overseas and military ballots, Peter St. Onge of the Charlotte Observer reports.
The numbers, which are on pace to shatter previous early voting highs, thus far show a continued enthusiasm among Democrats.
In onestop voting:
Party: Democrats, 61%, Republicans 23%, Unaffiliated 16%.
Gender: Female, 56%, Male 44%
Race: White, 64%, Black, 32%
N.C. polls show Barack Obama leading among female voters — and by a large margin among black voters. Experts point to the turnout of both as critical to his success in the state; they estimate that Obama needs the black turnout in N.C. needs to be 22-23 percent for him to win. In 2004, blacks made up 18.6 percent of voters.
More after the jump.
Officials in both parties expect the percentage of black voters to decline some as Republicans turn out in greater percentages on Nov. 4. But the early surge is encouraging to Democrats, who have been disappointed in the past by election day turnout of their favorable demographics.
For Republican John McCain, the absentee ballot numbers should be encouraging:
Republicans 54%, Democrats 30%, Unaffiliated 16%.
The New York Times reports this morning that "significantly more" Democrats than Republicans have cast ballots at this early stage in Iowa, North Carolina, New Mexico and Ohio. In Florida, more Republicans have cast ballots, and in Colorado the numbers are even thus far after the first day of early voting.