Hillsborough shatters early voting numbers; pales in comparison to Pinellas

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Hillsborough County is breaking records this election.

More people than ever are choosing to cast a vote before Election Day.

As reported by the Tampa Bay Times, more than 80,000 vote by mail and early voting ballots have been counted where as in the 2010 primary there were fewer than 57,500. That number jumped in the 2012 primary to 61,000.

It’s a similar story in Pinellas County where in 2010, according to the Supervisor of Election’s website, nearly 90,000 people voted early. In 2012, that number jumped to more than 100,000. This year nearly 115,000 voters chose to get a jump on Election Day and ditch their polling places.

Voters today in Pinellas County polls weren’t just given an “I voted” sticker either. They also got a pre-paid post card to request a mail ballot.

Janelle Irwin has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. She also hosts a weekly political talk show on WMNF Community radio. Janelle formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for Patch.com and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a diehard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and the ongoing Pier debacle. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also the devoted mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder. To contact, email janelle@floridapolitics.com.