On Voters Not Voting – Part II: The Demographics

We are gifted once more with Part II of Jill Dennison’s 3-part series on voting issues in U.S. elections, where she investigates the hurdles that some people must navigate in order to vote. An excellent post! Please share.

Filosofa's Word

Only 67% or all eligible voters are even registered to vote.  That is only two out of every three adults.  In Part I of this project, I looked at the reasons people gave for not voting, some of which were ludicrous, such as “forgot”, “weather”, and “too busy”.  But there are some legitimate reasons that people do not vote.  To understand these, I think it is important to look at some of the demographics of the non-voters.

Race

Among white voters, 73.5% of eligible voters did actually vote in 2016.  But minorities were much less likely to vote, with only 69.7% of African-Americans, 59.4% of Latinos, and the lowest group being Asians at 55.3%.

Age

Not surprisingly, the percentage of eligible voters who vote increases with age:

Age 18 to 24       58.5%

Age 25 to 34       66.4%

Age 35 to 44       69.9%

Age 45 to 54       73.5%

Age 55 to…

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Author: John Fioravanti

I'm a retired History teacher (35 years), husband, father of three, grandfather of three. My wife, Anne, and I became business partners in December, 2013, and launched our own publishing company, Fiora Books (http://fiorabooks.com), to publish my books. We have been married since 1973 and hope our joint business venture will be as successful as our marriage.

10 thoughts on “On Voters Not Voting – Part II: The Demographics”

  1. I’m glad SOMEone has taken this horrific bull by the horns. Gerrymandering and voter suppression should be made explicitly unconstitutional. Another despicable thing that happened in the 2016 elections was making it difficult ~ and nearly impossible in some districts/States ~ for 3rd party registrants to vote. In fact, in the primaries, at least one State gave poll volunteers a manual that instructed them to send Independents to a different table for a special ballot, a ballot of which the Registrar of Voters made few copies, knowing full well they would run out. This prevented millions from casting a vote for Bernie Sanders, the candidate who would have beaten Trump. The current Republican Party is bought and paid for by special interests. Omg John, you’ve spurred me onto my soap box again! 🙂 Hugs, Bro ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m happy to share and to spur you on, Tina, but Jill did all the heavy lifting on this one. I can’t get over the fact that yo guys have left election management and supervision in the hands of partisan interests. I know, States Rights again. We have special interests at work here in Canada too, but those yahoos don’t get anywhere near electoral mapping or voter registration. What a horror show! Thanks, Sis! Hugs!

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      1. Special interests buy and/or blackmail public officials, who in turn do all the dirty work. We citizens are kept in the dark and therefore are powerless to prevent it. But now that so many dirty dealings are being made public, we can wield the power of our vote. November will usher in great change. How does Canada keep special interests at bay? ❤

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        1. I’m not sure that we keep special interests completely at bay. However, all of the election machinery is placed in the hands of bureaucrats that are expected to be totally non-partisan. Voter registration is automatic and voters are sent postcards with their registration info and voting times and locations. Canada’s Chief Electoral Officer (appointed) may not support any party or candidate and does not have the right to vote. That person runs the government department called Elections Canada and directs the election machinery in keeping with the constitution and all laws passed by Parliament.

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            1. Ours is far from perfect, Tina, and the powerful special interests still have sway in Ottawa – but the corruption like the gerrymandering and rules designed to exclude groups of voters do not exist here. Although we have multiple parties, only the Liberals and Conservatives have won elections. But from time to time, the New Democratic Party (NDP – compares to your Progressives) wins enough seats to deny the other two parties a majority victory. That means the winning party forms a minority government and must compromise with the other two parties to stay in power. Here, if a Cabinet bill is defeated in the House of Commons, it is followed by a Vote of Non-Confidence. If the party in power is defeated on that vote, the PM and Cabinet must resign from the executive and a new election for the House of Commons is called. So our voters can elect a minority government and make sure it has a leash. If a party wins a majority, the PM has comparable power to a president whose party also controls Congress.

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              1. I love the Vote of Non-Confidence. It would be a powerful tool for us after the November elections, and a great way to oust Trump without having to go through impeachment proceedings. Thanks for sharing this, Bro ❤

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                1. The Parliamentary system has some advantages. Having said that, we never get to vote directly for the person we want to be Prime Minister. The executive (PM + Cabinet) are selected by the Governor General from the party which wins the most seats in the House of Commons. The PM selection is automatic: the leader of the winning party. Then the PM picks his cabinet from his party caucus in the Commons. So our executive is elected to, debates, and votes in the legislature. There is no real separation of executive and legislative branches here. However, the rule of “Responsible Government” dictates that the PM + Cabinet must maintain the confidence of the Commons or resign from their executive positions. Our Supreme Court acts as a check on Parliamentary laws in the same way as yours does. Our PM selects the judges who sit on federal courts including the Supreme Court. In a Parliamentary system, appointments to Cabinet and the courts + ambassadors are not subject to confirmation hearings and votes by the legislature – as you do with the Senate confirmations. Our Cabinet ministers are politicians who have already been elected to sit in the Commons by the voters in their ridings. If they have little expertise in the work of the department they have been appointed to lead, they are “trained” and advised by the Deputy Minister of their respective departments – who is an expert.

                  Also, keep in mind that the Governor General who represents the Queen (it is Her Majesty’s government) must safeguard the constitution. He/She has the power to fire a PM and Cabinet ministers if they violate constitutional law. Trump would find it more difficult to get away with his BS in our system.

                  Liked by 1 person

                  1. Given that he didn’t win the popular vote, Trump would never have been elected in your system. Perhaps we should just buy an island, move to it with like-minded people, and institute the best parts of both our systems 🙂 Thanks so much for the pol sci lesson, Bro. Much appreciated ❤

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