Voter Turnout – Too Little Expectation?

August 4, 2006 at 10:14 am Leave a comment

Yesterday’s turnout for Knox County election was approximately 52,000 or so, which is between 20-25% of the ~244,000 registered voters in this county.  R. Neal says that while it’s high for Knox County, it’s still low for an election with as much as stake as this one had.

What’s interesting to me is that, as I said yesterday at 7:30 there was a line out the door of the gym to vote and it took me 40 minutes to finally get all the way through.  And all 9 voting machines were in heavy use.  There was no way they could’ve expanded their resources to cover more voters.  What if turnout had been 40%?  60%?  God help us, 80%?  What would the polling places have done then?  They couldn’t order out for more machines…. the wait time would’ve been interminable.

Just because historical precedent suggests 20-25% turnout, that doesn’t mean a much higher percentage shouldn’t be prepared for.

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