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Wisconsin projects nearly 70 percent voter turnout

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin election officials are projecting voter turnout of nearly 70 percent for the fall election.

The Wisconsin Elections Commission says it expects 3.1 million people to vote in the race headlined by the Donald Trump-Hillary Clinton campaign. That would be 69.6 percent of the state’s voting-age population.

Chief elections official Michael Haas says the prediction was made in part by looking carefully at the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections, in which turnout was right around 70 percent.

Haas says absentee voting is gaining popularity but that doesn’t mean overall turnout will be higher. The state had collected more than 620,000 absentee ballots by Thursday morning.

The state took in almost 660,000 absentee ballots four years ago and about 640,000 eight years ago.

Wisconsin’s highest-ever turnout was 72.9 percent in 2004.

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