One-Stop Early Voting started yesterday in North Carolina, and early reports show that thousands of voters seized the opportunity. According to the Raleigh News & Observer, 13,000 North Carolinians made it to the polls by the end of the day.

I just got off the phone with Gary Bartlett, director of the State Board of Elections. He's encouraged, but said "I wish it had been higher." He's hoping to see "general election-type numbers" for the 2008 North Carolina primary.

I asked Mr. Bartlett if any of the numbers he's seen so far are especially notable. He said Democrats are definitely making up the bulk of early voters -- including mail-in votes, which usually draw more Republicans.

Another interesting stat: Over the last 24 hours, unaffiliated voters are breaking in large numbers to the Democrats, a reversal from the past. So far, 654 unaffiliateds have voted Democrat, only 119 Republican. Bartlett notes that in a few days we'll know if that's a trend of just "an initial burst of exuberance" for the Democratic candidates.

As of 10 am, this morning, the state board website reports that 15,539 have voted at One-Stop voting centers as of 10 am this morning.

Here are reports from different parts of the state on numbers who voted by the end of the day yesterday:

* 300 in Charlotte
*650 in Chapel Hill
* 785 in Durham
* 413 in downtown Raleigh