Leon County Sees Lowest Voter Turnout Since 1998

By: Jennifer Milton Email
By: Jennifer Milton Email

"I really just hadn't been keeping up with the candidates and I honestly didn't have enough time to go vote anyway," said Keaton Perry.

Based on county and state wide data from the mid-term election, many people like Keaton Perry chose not to cast a ballot. Election officials say only 60 percent of Leon County residents made it to the polls.

"That is the second lowest general election that I've ever administered in Leon County as supervisor of elections. Only the 1998 gubernatorial election with a 56 percent turnout was a lower general election," said Leon County Supervisor of Elections, Ion Sancho.

However, Leon County's voter turnout was higher than other parts of the sunshine state. Overall, only 49 percent of registered voters participated in the election.

"I think in efforts to get out the vote, not enough was done to tell people what they were voting for," said Louise Ritchie.

Media outlets were bombarded with vicious campaign ads this year and Leon County's supervisor of elections says mud-slinging could be to blame for the low numbers.

"Talking to citizens that I've talked to around the county and around the state, it's clear that everyone was disturbed by that," said Sancho.

Some feel nothing should sway others from performing their civic duties.

"Really when it comes to particularly women and African-Americans, how many people fought, suffered, put their lives on the line for us to be able to vote," said Ritchie.

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