Early voting results show Obama with turnout lead

Early voting results give both Democrats and Republicans hope for a victory. Democrats have done more early voting, but Republicans note the early voting turnout is lower than in 2008.

(AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Blake Warner, of Edmond, Okla., marks his ballot during early voting in Oklahoma City, on Friday,.

Republicans said they see hope in early voting results in key states, which mostly shows Democrats casting more early ballots but not at the pace that Obama set in his victory in 2008 over Republican John McCain by 7 percentage points.

"What we're seeing consistently ... is that there is a general underperforming in places where President Obama needs to do well and there's an over-performing in places where Governor Romney does well," Romney's political director Rich Beeson said on "Fox News Sunday."

Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod said Obama's early leads in states like Nevada and Iowa and the vital swing state of Ohio would hold up on Election Day, even if he does not repeat the size of his victory in 2008.

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"I'm not suggesting we're going to win by the same margin we won in 2008. They are comparing themselves to John McCain, who had virtually no ground operation in many of these states," Axelrod said on "Fox News Sunday."

"So, yes, they are going to do a little better than McCain did, and we may not do as well as we did in 2008, but we're doing plenty well - and well enough to win this race," he said.

The Associated Press reports that thousands of people waited for hours in long lines during the last weekend of early voting in Ohio.

At some sites Sunday, lines snaked for several city blocks and it took hours to cast a ballot. In Cleveland, more than 2,500 people braved the cold in a line that stretched two blocks on Sunday afternoon.

In Akron, voters waited an average of two hours to vote Sunday. In Columbus, 15,000 people waited in line for as long as two hours from Friday through Sunday to cast early ballots in a state that could decide the presidential election.

In Cincinnati, several thousand voters waited for as long as four hours in sometimes-rainy chilly weather.

About 1.6 million people have voted early in Ohio.

In Indiana, residents have only a few more hours to cast early ballots for this year's hotly contested presidential, Senate, governor's and other races.

Voters can cast early in-person ballots for Tuesday's election until noon Monday at county courthouses and other locations around the state.

In Indianapolis, the number of residents who've cast early ballots so far is down from 2008. But Marion County Clerk's office spokeswoman Angie Nussmeyer tells The Indianapolis Star that's likely due to this year's lack of satellite voting centers in Indianapolis, not reduced voter interest.

The Evansville Courier & Press reports that early voting in southwestern Indiana's Vanderburgh County appears poised to eclipse the number of early ballots cast in 2008.

In 2008, a record quarter of all Hoosiers voters cast early ballots.

About a quarter of Arkansas' registered voters have cast ballots early in this year's general election.

Early voting wraps up Monday in Arkansas. Overall, Secretary of State Mark Martin predicts a similar turnout to the 2008 general election, when nearly 65 percent of registered voters cast ballots.

Martin says more than 371,000 voters had cast ballots as of late Friday. The state has about 1.6 million registered voters.

Voters are casting ballots on the presidential race and congressional races. Most of the campaign's focus has been on House and Senate races around the state as Republicans try to win control of the state Legislature for the first time since Reconstruction.

On Election Day, polls are open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

About 30 million people have already voted in 34 states and the District of Columbia, either by mail or in person. No votes will be counted until Tuesday but some key states are releasing the party affiliation of those who vote early, reports the Associated Press.

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Colorado

Votes: 1.6 million

Democrats: 35 percent

Republicans: 37 percent

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Florida

Votes: 4.3 million

Democrats: 43 percent

Republicans: 40 percent

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Iowa

Votes: 614,000

Democrats: 43 percent

Republicans: 32 percent

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Nevada

Votes: 702,000

Democrats: 44 percent

Republicans: 37 percent

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North Carolina

Votes: 2.7 million

Democrats: 48 percent

Republicans: 32 percent

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Ohio

Votes: 1.6 million

Democrats: 29 percent

Republicans: 23 percent

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Sources: The Associated Press, state elections agencies and the United States Elections Project at George Mason University.

Note: Party affiliation in Ohio is based on the last primary in which a voter participated.

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Associated Press Senior Elections Research Coordinator Cliff Maceda contributed to this report.

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