Chesterton Tribune



Voter turnout low without competitive Democrat race

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Who knows how much more meager voter turnout might have been in Porter County on Tuesday if there hadnít been the Boone Township school referendum.

With the referendum, only 10.99 percent of registered voters bothered to show up at the polls. That compares to 15.34 percent in the last midterm election in 2010 and to around 20 percent in the midterm election in 2006.

Hurting turnout was the lack of a meaningful primary race on the Democrat side, where there were only Dave Reynolds and the quixotic Harold Lush vying for the nomination for Sheriff. Democrats pulled an anemic 38.13 percent of the ballots on Tuesday, compared to the 59.03 percent pulled by Republicans. And 2.84 percent of the voters--367--pulled non-partisan ballots, just to vote in the Boone Township school referendum.

By way of comparison, Democrats pulled 48.67 percent of the ballots in the 2010 primary, compared to 50.56 percent by Republicans; and fully 53.05 percent of the ballots in the 2006 primary, compared to 46.23 percent by Republicans.

Despite the hotly contested race in Duneland--Kyle Yeltonís challenge of incumbent Jim Biggs for the latterís 1st District seat on the Porter County Council--voter turnout here was even slightly lower than countywide. Of the 27,562 voters in Dunelandís 30 precincts, only 2,831 or 10.27 percent voted.

For the record, voters in Boone Township narrowly supported a new property tax to fund the school corporation, 865 yes votes to 842 no. The same referendum failed in 2013.


Posted 5/7/2014