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Texas Last in Voter Turnout

Near the Bottom in Voter Registration
AMARILLO -- If the early voting turnout numbers look a bit low, that's because they always are in Texas.

    According to several studies, Texas ranks at or near the bottom in both voter registration and turnout.

    Judging by the number of elections we have in Texas, at least one every year, we like elections.  We just don't like voting in them.

    According to two different studies, the Lone Star State ranks 51st in voter turnout.  That's dead last behind every state and the District of Columbia.

    Voter registration is a little better, but not much.  Texas ranks 47th.

    There are many reasons why people stay away from the polls.  According to a 2008 Census Bureau voting survey, the top reasons why registered voters did not cast a ballot was lack of interest and dislike of the candidates.  Those two categories alone account for more than a quarter of the registered voters.

    Potter county elections coordinator Melynn Huntley says there are other reasons.  "There is some research on a national level that shows when a race gets particularly dirty, it offends voters and they choose not to go the polls.

    Based on early voting totals and estimates of what election day itself will hold, Potter county is projected to have a turnout of 13% to 14%.

    Randall county's turnout is projected to be somewhere between 15% and 17%.

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