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More than 17 percent of the people who register to vote never make it to the ballot box, and according to new research, these people tend to be poor or uneducated. Research also suggests, however, that more of these people would vote if officials made it more convenient. The most basic duty of any candidate is to get supporters to the polls, and researchers at Austin Community College and Texas State University discovered the 2.3 million non-voters in Texas broke down as 34 percent Hispanic, 5 percent African American and 61 percent everyone else. More than 13.1 million Texans had registered to vote by July 1, and that number is likely to grow to more than 13.5 million. That's 71 percent of the voting age population of 18.2 million people. If 2008 is any indication, only 8 million Texans will decide who wins the election in November. Early voting in Texas is open from Oct. 22-Nov. 2, with polls open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. That time period is shorter than other states, some of which allow early voting a month ahead of the Nov. 6 election day.

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