Voter Turnout Was 19% in Last Week’s Primary

Voting-boothThe numbers are in for last week’s primary and they aren’t particularly impressive.

A total of 1,532,756 ballots were cast statewide out of the 8,032,363 registered voters in Pennsylvania.

That comes out to a 19.08% turnout rate. So less than one in five registered voters showed up to the polls last Tuesday.

Acting Secretary of the Commonwealth Pedro Cortes, however, did have two pieces of good news to deliver. The first is that there was no need for recounts.

“The winning margins were sufficient in the statewide judicial races that I have certified there will be no automatic recounts,” Cortés said. “The counties did a tremendous job in reporting unofficial results to us in a timely manner.”

Additionally, the state’s new election website was also a big success. Between 8 p.m. and midnight on Election Day, the site received 2,953,060 hits.

“The changes to the website have made it easier than ever for users to find precise numbers,” Cortés said. “We are extremely pleased that so many people were able to put the website to good use and look forward to continued improvement of this in-demand service. We encourage users of the site to give feedback on the re-design and additional features desired.”

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  4. Turnout in the 13 Division of the 23rd Ward Phila., PA 19124 was 46.4%.

  5. Datacheck-
    Here’s the excel statistics file from the Dept of State.
    http://www.dos.pa.gov/VotingElections/OtherServicesEvents/VotingElectionStatistics/Documents/currentvotestats.xls

    The spreadsheet has about a dozen sheets. The last sheet is Active-InActive. Their count is
    7,282,630 active
    749,954 inactive

    My number is higher, because I inactivate any voter registered prior to 2008 who did not vote in the past 14 elections (Apr 2008 until now). This is because any voter with that voting record is supposed to be place in the inactive pile by the election board (but they are too lazy).

    Anyway, your claim of only 10,000 is off by a factor of 72 against the “official” file, and off by 100 times against my “realistic” count.

    Larry-
    You do like taking “stupid” to a new level.

    1) The inactive voters (at least in my county) are in a different section of the roll books, so you’d be calling extra attention to yourself if you tried to vote as one of them.

    2) I heard there is an additional step/form to fill out to “reactivate” your status and that you’re supposed to show your ID, just like a first time voter. Certainly, you are going to get extra scrutiny.

    3) You risk someone knowing the person you are posing as, and your signature isn’t going to match the copy of your signature than they have in from of them.

    4) The penalty is jail and a huge fine.

    5) If you pose as an active voter, you risk that the actual voter has already voted before you get there, or someone there knows the person.

    6) You can’t do this in your own precinct, so you have to do extra work to travel to where no one might know you.

    7) It’s easier to knock on a couple doors or offer to pay someone who is actually registered $10 to vote.

    Which is why NO ONE does this type of fraud and they haven’t found any cases.

    As 13thDistrict pointed out, real election fraud comes from corrupt poll workers running the machines or checking voters in the first place. Also, from absentee ballots.

    BTW, 4 years after he moved away to Virginia (officially) and registered to vote there, Rick Santorum is STILL also registered in PA. Using his US passport (which does not contain his address) as a photo-ID, he could illegally vote in PA.

  6. TonyV, thanks, that was certainly the case at the precinct where I voted May 19th.

    Larry, explain to me exactly how so-called voter id will prevent institutional voter fraud?

  7. Turnout is low because there are few to zero competitive races. Outside the cities the dominate party anoints it chosen candidates and the minority party struggles to field candidates. Either way there us generally no opposition and, therefore, little reason to get out of your chair to vote unless you are one of the party faithful. Bottom line … no choices, no turnout.

  8. 13thDistrict, of course it presents an opportunity for someone to claim that they are one of the tens of thousands of people on the list. One can imagine a busload of people being assigned the names of dead registered voters. Has that actually happened? There is no way to know without a tool to detect it — an ID requirement.

  9. Larry:

    In no sense whatever does that present any opportunity for voter fraud. Registered voters simply don’t vote sometimes.

    What’s your justification for that statement?

    Morever, Voter ID may prevent fraudulent voting of one person claiming to be another. There’s virtually no evidence of that actually happening. The biggest voter fraud case I can remember just happened in Philly, and it was election workers casting fraudulent votes to make the counts match. Voter ID would not have stopped that.

  10. David,
    Not sure when the last time you obtained the voterfil e,but the suppression # is 10,170, not 1 million.

  11. Diano, because that presents huge opportunities for voter fraud, a photo ID requirement should be re-implemented. I’m sure you agree.

  12. There are about 1 million voters who are flagged as InActive in the voter file. Of these 1 million voters, fewer than 2,000 voted in the 2014 general election. For all intents and purposes, these voters are dead/moved/dropped and should not be part of voter turnout calculations. Some counties are just very backlogged (or lazy) about cleaning up the lists.

    The proper denominator is closer to 7 million.

    using my numbers from May 4th snapshot, I get
    1,532,756 / 6,983,394 = 21.95% turnout

    (note, my total registered count was 8,029,711 from that snapshot)

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