US voter turnout at 20-year low in 2016

Washington, Nov 12 (IANS) Voter turnout in the US this year dipped to nearly its lowest point in 20 years, a media report said.

While election officials were still tabulating ballots of Tuesday’s presidential election, the 126 million votes already counted means about 55 per cent of voting age citizens cast ballots this year, CNN said the report published on Friday.

The turnout is the lowest in a presidential election since 1996, when 53.5 per cent of voting-age citizens turned out.

As election officials go through outstanding ballots — such as provisional ballots and those with write-ins — the turnout figures will change.

But it would take another 18.7 million votes to reach the high point for turnout of 2008, when nearly 64 per cent of voting age citizens cast a ballot.

Early results in some of the key states that propelled President-elect Donald Trump to his win revealed that more voters cast ballots this year than in 2012, even though overall turnout was down, CNN reported.

In Florida, nearly 9.4 million ballots were cast, compared to 8.5 million in 2012. Michigan saw 4.8 million compared to 4.7 million four years ago and in North Carolina, the 4.7 million ballots this year was about 138,000 more than last cycle.

Full measures of turnout will not be clear for as long as several more weeks, when election officials in the various states finish tabulating and certify the results.

The figures also do not include people of age who are ineligible to vote or have not registered, CNN added.