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Rounds and Johnson easily win GOP nod in virus-altered South Dakota primary

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — South Dakota election officials Tuesday processed a historic number of absentee ballots as polls closed in the primary election.

The secretary of state’s office reported that nearly 87,000 absentee ballots had been returned by Tuesday afternoon, which is almost four times the number received in the 2018 primary. The secretary of state encouraged absentee voting in order to avoid coronavirus infections.

Joe Biden easily carried the state in the path to the Democratic nomination for president, and President Donald Trump won without opposition on the Republican side.

Sen. Mike Rounds and Rep. Dusty Johnson won their Republican primaries and are considered strong favorites to win a second term.