Ballot counting started early in Iowa

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Iowa election officials started counting absentee ballots the day before Election Day.

More than 640,000 Iowans voted earlyas of November 3, 2012.  That set a new record for early voting in the state. 

Overall, 721,890 early ballots were requested or sent in Iowa for the November 6 general election.

The goal for county auditors is to count at least 40% of the absentee ballots before Election Day.  All absentee ballots must be counted by county auditors by 10 p.m. on Election Day.

The United States Elections Project reported as of November 5, 2012 nearly 31-million U.S. voters had already cast ballots.