Over the past several months, Pew collected data about the 2012 presidential election from nearly every state and the District of Columbia. We used the findings to create a snapshot of each jurisdiction, focusing on how many people voted, how long they waited to cast their ballots, how they cast them, and how many ballots were not counted. These snapshots will be released over the coming months, five at a time, and the Election Data Dispatches will take a closer look at the latest snapshots each week.
In November 2012, Louisiana voters cast 315,029 ballots during the weeklong in-person early voting period, which accounted for 16 percent of all ballots cast. This is a 25 percent increase from 2008, when 251,221 ballots—13 percent of all ballots—were cast during in-person early voting.
In Orleans Parish, which includes New Orleans, the number of in-person early voters more than doubled, from 12,564 in 2008 to 26,704 in 2012.
The number of 2012 early in-person voters was nearly seven times that of absentee voters. A valid excuse such as illness or travel is necessary to vote by mail in Louisiana, whereas all voters are eligible to cast their ballots in person during the early voting period.