More Than 98,000 Ballots Cast in Early Voting in Arkansas

NOVEMBER 2, 2006 - Posted at 7:48 a.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK (AP) - The election is six days away, but Arkansas officials say more than 98,000 voters have already cast ballots in the state. This year's voting is the first general election in nearly three decades without an incumbent running for the governor's office.

Across the state, counties have reported some problems in early voting. However, the problems haven't reached the pitch of the May primary, when issues with new voting machines delayed counting in some counties until days after the election. Natasha Naragon, a spokeswoman for the Arkansas secretary of state's office, said that, as far as state officials know, no one has been unable to vote early if they wanted to.

Secretary of State Charlie Daniels has predicted a 55 percent turnout for Tuesday's election among the state's one-point-66 million registered voters. That would be about 913,0 ballots actually cast. He predicted that a third of those votes would come from early voters.

As of Wednesday afternoon, those who had cast ballots early totalled more then ten percent of Daniels predicted turnout. Out of the state's 75 counties, only 59 had reported early voter turnout to the state.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)