For months, poll watchers knew that not as many voters would be coming out as did in 2008.
Then came Superstorm Sandy.
Reports say turnout for a presidential election in New Jersey was at an all time low of 60 percent of registered voters. The previous low was 70 percent for the George Bush vs. Al Gore match-up in 2000.
“The state government there made a wonderful effort to allow email voting and in fact other kinds of voting but you cannot make up for a huge natural disaster,” said Temple political science professor David Adamany.
He says Sandy is only partly responsible. In Pennsylvania, where storm damage was much less, turnout dropped four percentage points from 2008.
“The enthusiasm for President Obama is plainly lower than it was four years ago,” said Adamany. “And there were some conservatives who were discontented with Gov. Romney and probably preferred to withhold their vote.”
The numbers suggest that Adamany is correct on both counts. Although Obama drew fewer voters in the Keystone State this time around, Mitt Romney actually wound up with less voter support than John McCain got in the last election.
Nationally, with some ballots yet to be counted, 14 million fewer Americans voted this year compared with 2008.
|Voted Democrat||Voted Republican||Voted Other||Total Vote #||Total Registered||Percentage of those Registered who voted|
|Pa. 2012 (98.8% reporting)||2,865,690||2,581,357||68,613||5,515,660||8,511,217||64.8%|
|Bucks County 2012||158,085||154,242||3,914||316,241||435,577||72.6%|
|Montgomery County 2012||230,493||173,176||4,375||408,044||554,361||73.6%|
|Chester County 2012||115,078||116,905||2,634||234,617||435,577||53.8%|
|Delaware County 2012||160,452||102,688||2,717||265,857||397,287||66.9%|