Friday, October 30, 2015

Early Voting Still Down Significantly From Four Years Ago In Marion County

In the closing days of Indianapolis' municipal election, voting turnout has improved only slightly from the first three weeks of early voting. New numbers released by the Marion Co. Election Board show in-person early voting down 43% from four years ago with 3,462 casting votes through the close of business yesterday compared to 6,031 votes cast by early walk-voting in 2011. Absentee balloting is only slightly better. The number of requests for absentee ballots is down 35% from four years ago with 6,663 requests being made to date compared to 10,297 at this point in 2011. As of yesterday, just 3,728 of those requested absentee ballots had been returned to the election board, or a return rate of about 56%.

Mayor Greg Ballard won the 2011 mayoral election by a margin of just about 7,500 votes. His margin was only a little over 5,300 votes in 2007 when he won by essentially the same three-point percentage margin he won in 2011. Election turnout was lower in 2007 than 2011. A little more than 26% of the voters participated in the 2007 municipal election compared to the nearly 30% who participated in the 2011 municipal election. There are several competitive council races that could be decided by a fewer than one hundred votes, and turnout in those close races will determine which political party controls the council for the next four years.

Democratic Party leaders cannot be happy with a low turnout number. Clearly, Democrats' chances improve in Marion County when more voters turn out to vote. They lost both the mayor's race and control of the council in 2007 during a low turnout election. The party still lost the mayor's race with a higher voter turnout in 2011, but it captured control of the council with that higher turnout vote.


Anonymous said...

So the Marion County Democrat Party "lost the mayor's race with a higher voter turnout in 2011, but it captured control of the council with that higher turnout vote..."

Interesting to note that the Marion County Democrat Party- in control of the City County Council since 2011- was in wholesale fashion utterly "unable" or perhaps unwilling (?) to stop a lawless, corrupt Republican mayor from cramming through deals often termed (and accurately so in many cases) "illegal", "unethical", "self-serving", "pay to play", "insider", or all of the above.

The two major political parties are indistinguishable from each other. I fail to see any reason to vote. There is really no "choice" because many of these politicians are essentially "the same".

Gary R. Welsh said...

I can't argue with that. There's a handful of downtown insiders who pick the candidates for both parties each election cycle. Unless you are beholden to their self-serving financial interests, you are barred from public service in this county. Indianapolis can pretend all it wants to be something great, but it is easily one of the most corrupt cities in America. There is a reason the money launderers, Ponzi schemers and organized crime figures are relocating to Indianapolis. They can't believe how easy it is to engage in criminal activities here with immunity that would be prosecuted anywhere else. Their favorite prosecutor is about to become our city's next mayor. They're all contributing to his campaign. Why would crooks be making campaign contributions by the tens of thousands of dollars each to a former federal prosecutor? Think about that.