At a certain point on election night, all eyes will turn to Wisconsin and which way the partisan scale tips. Knowing our state’s importance, and having already experienced an unnecessarily hectic election day this year, Wisconsinites are jumping at their chance to cast ballots safely and remotely.

From reporting via The Center Square, the Wisconsin Election Commission noted in a recent statement that, “As of Monday morning, 836,469 absentee ballot applications have been reported received by municipal clerks. Those clerks also report sending 821,378 ballots and receiving 331,097 back.”

The 331,097 number marks a massive upshot in the number of absentee ballots submitted in previous election cycles, particularly for a mid-August primary. In 2016, for example, the number come election day was a meager 76,529. In the recent 2018 primary, which would have greatly benefited from a more robust absentee option, the number was 108,162.

WEC Administrator Meagan Wolfe thinks that these numbers all but ensure a marked increase in voters who will utilize vote-by-mail in the 2020 general election. “We want everyone’s vote to count, so complete and mail your absentee ballot as soon as possible. The post office advises it may take a week for mail to get from you to your clerk’s office, so don’t wait,” she said.

Time will tell exactly how drastic the increase in absentee voters is. But for all of those who choose the absentee option, they avoid the high potential of COVID infection that comes with in-person voting. You can read more on the sheer volume of absentee Wisconsin voters here.