Tuesday, May 19, 2009

So where did they go?

In October 2008 1 793 400 people voted. Last week about 1 625 000 people voted - final number out next week. That is about 170 000 fewer people voting in the BC election than the federal election. Almost one in ten people that voted in the federal election did not vote in the BC election.

BC elections have often attracted slightly fewer voters than the federal elections, but the gap has not been this big. The gap has normally been only a percent or two, not almost 10%.

This latest provincial election is big shift in BC politics, never before have people stayed away in such a dramatic increase as happened this time.

The turnout number may look bad from this election, but as a portion of the total population of BC the turnout is not as bad as the numbers were in some the 1960s elections. Specifically the 1966 election when 31.74% of the residents in BC voted in the election. This time it looks like it will have been 36.4% of the resident population that voted. I am counting everyone that lives in the province and comparing that total to the number that voted.

Governance effects all of us in BC and the people deciding the election are only a minority of the people that live. At some point there is an issue of legitimacy of the government if only a small minority decides who will be the government.

I know that the population numbers include people under the age of 18, but I do not believe there is any good reason not to let youth vote, the age restrictions is unreasonable and no basis in why we let people vote.
Post a Comment