Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Hard-fought election fails to inspire more to vote

  • Print

THE closest election contest in Manitoba in more than a decade was not enough to propel more voters to the polls.

Elections Manitoba posted official results of the Oct. 4 provincial election Thursday, and they show voter turnout actually declined almost a full percentage point from the 2007 election, to 55.77 per cent.

Turnout reported on election day was skewed because initial results included the votes of people who were sworn onto the voters list at the polls. Those voters were not initially included in the number of registered voters. Ultimately, that meant turnout went down.

Mary Skanderbeg, manager of elections operations for Elections Manitoba, said the numbers are disappointing.

"I always say as long as we have the process in place, it's up to the voters," Skanderbeg said.

She said the turnout result must be put in perspective because Elections Manitoba was much better at getting people registered to vote in 2011. The agency spent more time in the field enumerating and 36,054 more people were on the voters lists this year than in 2007. However, only 12,803 more people voted.

Some ridings did show a jump in turnout, particularly those that received a lot of media attention for having close contests. That includes River Heights, with turnout up more than three percentage points to 72.51 per cent. It received a lot of attention for the close race between Liberal Leader Jon Gerrard and Tory candidate Marty Morantz.

River Heights had the highest turnout of any riding for at least the second election in a row.

Close contests in Seine River and Southdale also propelled more people to the polls, with turnout jumping more than seven and more than four points, respectively, in those ridings.

Close contests don't always predict higher voter turnout. In Brandon West, where Tory Reg Helwer held off the NDP's Jim Murray by just 151 votes, turnout fell more than seven percentage points, to just below 60 per cent.

In Kirkfield Park, which was the closest race of all, with NDP incumbent Sharon Blady beating Tory Kelly de Groot by 26 votes, turnout declined 0.27 percentage points.

The Pas had the lowest turnout in the province this time at just 30.4 per cent. That is down more than six points from 2007. Keewatinook (formerly Rupertsland) was the only northern riding to show a slight increase in turnout, going from 33.34 to 35.68 per cent.

mia.rabson@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 15, 2011 A8

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Winnipeg Cheapskate: Publicity

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • MIKE.DEAL@FREEPRESS.MB.CA 100615 - Tuesday, June 15th, 2010 The Mane Attraction - Lions are back at the Assiniboine Park Zoo. Xerxes a 3-year-old male African Lion rests in the shade of a tree in his new enclosure at the old Giant Panda building.  MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
  • JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Local- A large osprey lands in it's nest in a hydro pole on Hyw 59  near the Hillside Beach turnoff turn off. Osprey a large narrow winged hawk which can have a wingspan of over 54 inches are making a incredible recovery since pesticide use of the 1950's and  1960's- For the last two decades these fish hawks have been reappearing in the Lake Winnipeg area- Aug 03, 2005

View More Gallery Photos

U2011: Understanding the Manitoba election: University of Manitoba

Poll

Do you support a proposed ban on tanning beds for youth under 18?

View Results

Ads by Google