Absentee voting in Hill County for the Nov. 5 midterm election seems to be more popular than it was during the 2000 presidential election.
"At this point, I would say all of our precincts are up for requests compared to 2000," said Betty Williams, deputy election administrator for Hill County. There are 24 voter precincts in Hill County.
Hill County's election office has issued 512 absentee ballots since the 45-day pre-election voting period opened Sept. 20. Already, 257 completed ballots have been returned to the Clerk and Recorder's Office, Williams added.
Hill County had 1,279 absentee votes in the 2000 election, Williams said.
Williams attributed the rise in absentee voter requests to a 1999 law change and to mailings by the state Democratic and Republican parties. The parties mailed campaign brochures to voters and each contained a form to request absentee ballots.
The 1999 law change eliminated the need for a reason to vote early. The old law allowed absentee voting only if the person would be gone on Election Day or physically unable to go to the polls.