JUNEAU- Absentee and early voting could play an important role in the outcome of the Alaska Senate race.
In the first three days of early voting, over 2,700 ballots have been cast. If that pace continues over the 15 days of early voting, it will exceed the total of 8,455 early ballots cast in the 2006 general election.
So far, election officials also have mailed more than 27,600 absentee ballots, more than in 2006.
Campaigns are focusing on locking in votes early.
The director of the division of elections doesn't expect to start counting names written onto ballots until about Nov. 18, when the total number of ballots is known and it's clear whether, legally, the state must count write-ins.