LOS ANGELES (AP) — For over 1 million Californians, the Nov. 4 election is over. That’s because they’ve already voted.
A growing throng of early voters in the nation’s most populous state — perhaps comprising half of all votes to be cast in California’s general election — has stretched Election Day into weeks. Candidates who wait until the end to close the deal with voters will be too late.
“The election is not a one-day event anymore. It’s a 30-day event,” said veteran Democratic strategist Bill Carrick, who is spearheading Kennedy clan member Bobby Shriver’s campaign for Los Angeles County supervisor.
The midterm elections are just over a week away and California is one of more than 30 states in which some form of advance voting is shaping the way campaigns must be conducted. In some rural areas of the state, 8 of every 10 ballots cast could come through the mail.
The strategy-shifting dynamics caused by early voting are coming into play in states such as Florida, where Republican Gov. Rick Scott faces a tough re-election challenge from Democrat Charlie Crist, and Iowa, where GOP Senate candidate Joni Ernst hopes to defeat Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley and pick up one of the six additional seats the party needs for a majority.