Absentee voting up in Wisconsin, why it could help Gov. Walker

MADISON (AP) — Republican Gov. Scott Walker and Democratic challenger Mary Burke say turnout will be the key to victory in Tuesday's election. It looks like they'll get it.

According to state election officials, voters had cast 240,308 absentee ballots by mail or in person as of Friday morning with 22,462 ballots still outstanding. That compares with 230,744 absentee ballots in the November 2010 election which saw Walker defeat Democrat Tom Barrett.

University of Wisconsin-Madison political scientist Ken Mayer says absentee voters tend to skew Republican.

But it's difficult to draw conclusions. State election officials are predicting a record turnout for a gubernatorial eleciton. That could help Burke since higher turnout typically means more poor voters who favor Democrats. But polls show Walker leading Burke among likely voters.