TAMPA, Fla. - The race for the White House runs through Tampa on Thursday as both presidential candidates host dueling campaign rallies back-to-back in an attempt to appeal to last-minute voters in the battleground state.
With five days to go until the presidential election, nearly half of all registered Florida voters have cast their ballots. President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden will appear hours apart in outdoor rallies.
Trump's rally will take place at 1:30 p.m. in the north parking lot of Raymond James Stadium, which is also an early voting site as well as a COVID-19 testing location.
Meanwhile, Biden's drive-in rally is planned for 6:30 p.m. at the Florida State Fairgrounds.
Supporters for the president told FOX 13 they had started lining up outside RayJay as early as 1 a.m.
More than 73 million Americans have already voted, absentee or by mail.
The latest polls, however, have Florida in a virtual lock. The Sunshine State has already seen record numbers of voters turnout for early in-person voting and mail-in voting.
More than 50 percent of Florida’s registered voters have cast ballots by mail or at early voting sites, as turnout continues to surge ahead of Tuesday’s elections.
As of Thursday morning, 7,385,667 of the state’s 14,441,869 registered voters had cast ballots, according to the state Division of Elections. The largest chunk, 4,220,229, had been cast by mail, while 3,165,438 voters had gone to early voting sites.
Democrats had cast 2,992,000 votes, while Republicans had cast 2,787,723. Unaffiliated voters had cast 1,510,040, while third-party voters had cast 95,904, according to the Division of Elections
The 1992 presidential contest had the highest modern turnout rate at 83 percent.
Early voting sites will be open across the state through Saturday and in some counties on Sunday.
VOTER GUIDE: Florida early voting hours and locations
Information from the News Service of Florida was used in this report.