The Secretary of State’s office has released voter turnout statistics for the 2016 Primary Election.
As it turns out (#seewhatididthere), 38 percent of registered voters actually came to cast a ballot on May 3 (or before May 3 in the case of the 16% who voted absentee).
But is that good or bad for Indiana? Is it good or bad for the nation as a whole? Well, we’re here to explain.
It was quite a good year, historically speaking, for a Primary. Looking back over the last 26 years, it’s only been topped by 2008. It was far better than 2014 anomaly election, when nobody was on the ballot.
Indiana also caught a lot of national heat for our historically low turnout in 2014. Based on those results, some have called for Election Day reforms that will increase the number of voters who will come to the polls.
When you look at 2016, however, Indiana fared fairly well. We looked at the turnout statistics in each state that had Primary elections for both parties on the same day (we did not count caucuses, which have a much lower turnout). Indiana had the 8th highest turnout among the 28 states where statistics are available.
Louisiana had a miserable 18% turnout. (I don’t know who was on the ballot in that state, but for what it’s worth, Louisiana has longer hours and a non-strict voter ID law). New Hampshire had the highest turnout and was the only state to top 50%. No surprise given their first-in-the-nation pride.
Finally, if you’re wondering what turnout was like in your county, we’re here to help. The chart below is sorted from highest to lowest.
Enjoy the data!