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earlyvoting300.jpg Submitted by Nadine Maeser on Wed, 10/20/2010 - 9:45am.

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) -- Election Day is just days away but voters are already taking advantage of early voting opportunities. Some of the hottest campaigns for Congress and state and local offices are in Brunswick County and the early voting numbers are reflecting those races. The numbers say it all. "Brunswick County's turned out more voters than any other county in the state so far during early voting and more Republicans in the state and New Hanover is a close second to us," said Frank Williams, who is the 7th District Republican Chairman. "I think that's a testament to our candidates and the organizations they've built and the messages they are communicating and that people are rallying around it." Brunswick County is racking up the numbers for early voting numbers with about 6,000 voters as of Tuesday night and majority of the voters are Republicans. It's not hard to see why as the county has some of the most anticipated races in the state. Poll worker Ray Flanigan said, "I think there are a lot of local races that are bringing people out because they are local in nature but they are also coming out heavy for the national races." Some of those contests include the Senate seat that's been held by R.C. Soles for more than 30 years as well as the Congressional seat race between incumbent Mike McIntyre and Republican candidate Ilario Pantano that's generated a lot of attention. "The Republicans have not controlled that seat in a 140 years and this is a serious chance to win that seat for the first time in well over a century and I think that's generated a lot of energy and enthusiasm on the ground," said Williams. As of Tuesday night, the top five counties with the highest early voting numbers are Brunswick County followed by New Hanover County. It is then followed by Alamance County, Wake County and Henderson County. Voters say they're getting out early to make sure they get their vote in. "People are worrying about what's going on in the economy and stuff and they're just being more careful about how they vote this time," said voter Cynthia Mullikin. "They're really looking into what the candidates think and what their format is before they make their final decision on who they are going to vote on." Brunswick County has eight early voting locations. County Board of Elections director Greg Bellamy says voting has been steady, but it's only a matter of time until another county catches up.

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