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Long IslandPolitics

Absentee ballots spike in Nassau and Suffolk for 2018

The number of absentee ballots requested by voters in both counties for Tuesday's election came in far ahead of 2014, the last gubernatorial contest. 

Evidence of Long Islanders' heightened interest in Tuesday's election could be seen in the amount of absentee ballots sent out in both counties with Nassau reporting 34,225 of the forms and Suffolk tallying 40,216.

The number of absentee ballots in Nassau sent in 2014, the last gubernatorial election, was 19,889. In Suffolk, absentee ballots sent out for the 2018 election more than doubled the 16,453 sent four years ago.

Absentee ballots aren't opened until after Election Day and could decide close races.

Of the absentee ballots requested in Nassau, 23,666 had been returned as of Tuesday morning with 11,007 coming from Democrats and Republicans sending back 7,845, according to the county board of elections.

In Suffolk, 26,120 absentee ballots had been returned as of Monday, according to that county's board of elections, 11,248 from Democrats and 8,417 from Republicans.

Countywide, 17,304 of Suffolk’s absentees went out to Democrats, 12,372 to Republicans.

In Nassau, 15,736 of the ballots were sent to Democrats and 10,856 went out to Republicans.

None of the absentee ballots, however, even those which have already arrived at the Nassau and Suffolk board of elections, will be included in the unofficial election night counts. Those votes will be counted when the official counts are done along with qualified paper ballots before the races certified.

The number of those who have cast absentee ballots in both counties can still grown because voters had until Monday to have their ballots postmarked and put into the mail.  Additional legal absentee votes are expected to come in within the next several days. 

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