BOSTON (CBS) — More people voted in the Massachusetts 2020 primary election than ever before, Secretary of State William Galvin announced on Wednesday. The announcement of the record number comes as Galvin warns more money is needed to ensure a successful general election in November.

There were just over 1.7 million votes cast, with more than 1.42 million coming from people submitting ballots in the Democratic primary. The close race between Sen. Ed Markey and Rep. Joe Kennedy for Senate drew nationwide attention. The previous record was set in the 1990 state primary when there were 1.55 million votes.

“I am thrilled that so many Massachusetts voters chose to participate in our State Primaries this year, whether it was by mail, during early voting, or in person on September 1st,” Galvin said in a statement. “Our local election officials worked tirelessly to make certain that everyone could vote safely and conveniently, ensuring that our primaries were a success, and I thank them for all of their hard work.”

The number of people who voted by mail in the election was not immediately available. In November, turnout at the polls and by mail is expected to be even higher.

Galvin told the State House News Service Tuesday that “more than a million” dollars is needed to cover the cost of mailing ballots, and is optimistic that the Baker administration will work with him.

He said he wishes there was more money for poll workers to process ballots. Some communities like Newton, Wellesley and Franklin had trouble counting all the votes in the 4th district Congressional race.

“It would be great if I had the resources to help them pay for personnel and staff, but I don’t,” Galvin said.

 

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