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Nearly 328,000 ballots: Early voting numbers halfway toward total from 2012

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MADISON — Nearly 328,000 voters have cast absentee ballots in Wisconsin so far.

That total reported Wednesday by the state Elections Commission is about half of the 659,000 absentee ballots cast by Election Day in 2012.

Many cities continue to expand locations where voters can cast absentee ballots in person. About 71 percent of the ballots returned so far were cast in person.

Turnout continues to be strong in the heavily Democratic counties of Milwaukee and Dane. About 29 percent of the statewide total has been cast there. About 51,000 ballots have been returned in Milwaukee County compared with about 44,000 in Dane County.

About 14 percent of all absentee ballots have been cast in the conservative Republican counties of Waukesha, Washington and Ozaukee that surround Milwaukee. Nearly 48,000 ballots have been returned there.