As of late afternoon, with 118 towns reporting, the statewide average for turnout was 50 percent, Merrill said.
“This election has generated a lot of excitement and passion, which is what we’re seeing at the polls," she said. "It is still too early to tell what the final turnout numbers will be, however, it does look like they may be quite high.”
These numbers are preliminary, and there are more than 50 towns, including some of Connecticut’s largest cities, which have not reported turnout figures yet, Merrill said.
Anecdotal observations at various polling places across Fairfield County reported waits of up to 40 minutes in Fairfield in the early morning and a steady stream of voters but short lines in Danbury.
In Greenwich, a town that reports voting statistics in real time online, was reporting a voter turnout of nearly 79 percent at 6:45 p.m. That's 29328 voters total so far in Greenwich alone.
In Danbury, Mayor Mark Boughton reported via Twitter that just over 50 percent of the city's voters had turned out as of 4 p.m., slightly ahead of the 2012 pace.
As of midday, with 115 towns in Connecticut reporting, the statewide average for turnout was at 29 percent.
Merrill's office also was reporting that more than 9,000 people had used same-day registration by noon to vote on Election Day.
“We suspected these numbers would be high, but this is a surprise even to us," Merrill said. "If you are still waiting to register to vote, there is no time to lose. Go to your Election Day registration site now. You must be registered by 8 p.m. to cast a vote.”
Election Day Registration permits anyone to register and vote in person on Election Day who meets the eligibility requirements and is not already registered, or is registered in one town but has moved to another.
Election Day Registration is not available at polling places, but is available at a designated Election Day Registration locations in each town through 8 p.m. You must be registered by 8 p.m. in order to vote. You will need to provide proof of identity and residency.
A town-by-town list of Election Day registration sites is available at myvote.ct.gov.
Polls are open until 8 p.m. Tuesday across Connecticut.
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