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February 12, 2008

The Democracy Arsenal Stat of the Day
Posted by Michael Cohen

Here at Democracy Arsenal, we've been talking quite a bit recently about the importance of election in foreign countries - but it's worth remember that here in the United States we haven't always been the best model for civic engagement. I wonder, however, if that is changing.

In 2004, participation in the presidential election was 60.7 percent of the electorate, the highest level since 1968. In 2006, voter turnout increased significantly among young people.

And of course this year, we've been bombarded with tales of huge turnout and long lines to vote. With that in mind, I pass along this reader e-mail from TNR's The Stump:

About ten voters were waiting for the polls to open at 6 a.m. this (windy and chilly) morning at an elementary school in Ashburn, Virginia (which lies about 50 minutes west of Washington, D.C.). A local Democratic organizer said that on a good primary day a total turnout of 200 voters is considered great.  This morning over 200 people had voted before 9 a.m.

Happy voting day!


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