Half a million Georgians have already voted in 2016 election

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October 17, 2016 - Atlanta - Voters take a photo with state Rep. Park Cannon (center), D-Atlanta, as they wait to vote at the Fulton County Government Center. Congressman John Lewis, Fulton County Chairman John Eaves and state Rep. Park Cannon, D-Atlanta, led young Democrats on a march from the Nelson Street Bridge to the Fulton County Government Center where the first day of early voting had begun. BOB ANDRES /BANDRES@AJC.COM

The first full week of advance, in-person voting in Georgia saw long lines across Metro Atlanta.

Now we know why.

Nearly 500,000 voters cast ballots in the state last week, in addition to the nearly 90,000 mail-in absentee ballots the state has received thus far.

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According to Secretary of State Brian Kemp, 578,539 ballots have been cast as of today.

Fulton County continues to lead the way with nearly 80,000 votes cast. DeKalb is next with almost 46,000, followed by Cobb (32,000), Forsyth (20,000) and Gwinnett (19,000).

Each of Georgia’s 159 counties have at least one early voting location open — often, it’s the main elections office. Some, such as Fulton County, will have several sites available. Be aware, however, that your regular neighborhood polling place will likely not be open yet; often, local municipalities only open select sites during the state’s 21-day early voting period.

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– When and where to vote early in North Fulton

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