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Full Version: 2006 Midterm Voter Turn Out
America's Debate > Archive > Election Forum Archive > [A] Election 2006
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overlandsailor
I have been spiraling through disgust and disappointment when it comes to the electorate in recent years. The lack of people taking the time to vote and how this, combined with gerrymandering was resulting in near certain reelection for incumbents in the House. I even predicted there would be no change of control in either house in 2006 because of the combination of apathy, gerrymandering and political zealotry.

I am not sure if I have ever been more happy about being wrong. thumbsup.gif

In St Louis County Missouri the Voter turnout was amazing for a Mid-Term:

QUOTE

SUMMARY REPORT
NOVEMBER 7, 2006
2006 GENERAL ELECTION
UNOFFICIAL RESULTS
RUN DATE:11/08/06
RUN TIME:02:00 AM
ST LOUIS COUNTY, MISSOURI
RUN TIME:02:00 AM

VOTES PERCENT

PRECINCTS COUNTED (OF 681). . . . .675. . . . .99.12%
REGISTERED VOTERS - TOTAL . . . . . .660,731
BALLOTS CAST - TOTAL. . . . . . . . . . .401,302
VOTER TURNOUT - TOTAL . . . . . . .60.74%
(source)
(format edited for readability here)

60% turnout still feels rather pathetic as a number, but when I consider that this is the highest turnout in a Midterm election that I can recall in my area of the country, I have to get over it and cheer! us.gif A check of the news seems to suggest that high turnouts can be seen all over the country.


Questions for Debate:

What was the voter turn out in your area?

Does this high turnout in a midterm election signal a slow death sentence for voter apathy or is it just an anomaly?


Edited: To eliminate two questions that were already covered by Vermillion's "Good day to be Democrat" topic.
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Wertz
What was the voter turn out in your area?

In my immediate area, it was excellent. Turnout in my precinct was 2 1/2 times what it had been in 2004 (and that was at 5:30pm, when a lot of post-work voters were just starting to turn up). Curiously, turnout in Florida overall was down slightly - hence we have a mini-Jeb as the "new" governor. On the bright side, Florida was one of only three or four states that had an apparent decrease in turnout (Louisiana, Georgia, and possibly Hawaii being the only others).

Does this high turnout in a midterm election signal a slow death sentence for voter apathy or is it just an anomaly?

I'd call it an anomaly. It would seem, though, that the Bush administration was a threat of such magnitude that more people than usual finally decided to get involved. Way, way, way too little, way, way, way too late. Unless the Bush administration can continue to be as criminally autocratic with a Democratic House finally exerting a modicum of oversight (which remains to be seen), apathy will return in two years.
overlandsailor
QUOTE(Wertz @ Nov 8 2006, 10:02 AM) *

I'd call it an anomaly. It would seem, though, that the Bush administration was a threat of such magnitude that more people than usual finally decided to get involved. Way, way, way too little, way, way, way too late. Unless the Bush administration can continue to be as criminally autocratic with a Democratic House finally exerting a modicum of oversight (which remains to be seen), apathy will return in two years.


I sincerely hope you are wrong, but if the American electorate has given me anything over the years it is pessimism in spades. However, the first step in resolving any problem is to first identify that problem. Now I am trying to conquer my "half-empty glass" tendencies. wink.gif

Perhaps with a bit of help this election and its results could help fuel a frontal assault on apathy. If, with Democratic control in Congress, proof of long suspected wrong-doing and conspiracies is uncovered, registered voters just might make the connection between corruption and electorial ignorance.

It is unfortunate, but I do not believe this connection would be made enmasse without help. Grassroots (not astro-turf) movements, government watchdog groups, and citizen journalism projects could conceivably come together to support an anti-apathy movement. It might sound like a stretch, but we can see the Christian coalition and Moveon.org standing shoulder to shoulder at savetheinternet.com and if that doesn't tell us anything is possible, I am not sure what could. The question is, where do you start?


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