MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Like political contests around the country, Minnesota's general election is expected to be like none other.

The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted a record number of Minnesota's eligible voters to seek absentee ballots. Early voting has been taking place at a breakneck pace. And state elections officials have gotten a court's approval to count absentee ballots for up to a week after Election Day, meaning winners might not be declared for days.

Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon says the state's voting system can be trusted, and the changes are all part of a plan to keep elections safe during the pandemic.