1 million and counting: Harris Co. crosses early vote threshold

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Friday, October 23, 2020
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HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- With Texas on pace to smash voting turnout records, the state's most populous county has already counted 1 million ballots cast with only a week left in the early vote period.

The Twitter account of the Harris County Clerk tweeted out the milestone at 3:15 p.m. Friday, nearly 11 days after the start of early voting.

The video above is from the first day of early voting in Harris County.

As of the time of that tweet, the county still had almost four hours left until polls closed for the day.

The Harris County Clerk also had a small request for one of Houston's biggest sports figures.

"Hey, @JJWatt, how 'bout an (sic) RT?" the tweet said.

There have been several factors to the brisk pacing of Harris County's unprecedented numbers this election.

Aside from the high stakes race for the White House, the county has offered a handful of accessible methods to vote, including in-person, drive-thru, and mail-in ballot dropoffs, as well as 122 polling locations. The county is also setting up a 24-hour vote day at its NRG Park headquarters.

It also helped that the pandemic pushed the state to extend the early vote period.

At the state level, Harris County's turnout will significantly figure in to Texas' number. A Texas Tribune report stated as many as 12 million voters could end up casting a ballot once the period ends on Oct. 30.