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New census data shows sharp increase nationally in early and mail-in voting

About 69% of U.S. voters either voted early or by mail in the 2020 general election, a sharp increase from previous elections, according to new data released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The report, released April 30, shows 43% of those who voted did so by mail and another 26 percent mailed in their ballots. That compares to 40% who either voted early or by mail in the 2016 presidential election, the Associated Press reported.

Though below the proportion nationally, Indiana also saw an increase in those voting either early or by mail — from 33% in 2016 to 61% in 2020, according to the Indiana Secretary of State. The increase came despite Indiana having some of the nation’s most severe limits on absentee voting in the 2020 general election despite having allowed no-excuse absentee voting in the primary.

A lawsuit filed by the nonpartisan group Indiana Vote by Mail and 12 citizens of the state sought to overturn that decision, and is now awaiting review by the U.S. Supreme Court. — The Indiana Citizen