Low Voter Turnout
by: Laurie Johnson, November 8, 2005 12:11:00 am
A gubernatorial election race usually results in about 700,000 Houston voters heading to the polls. A presidential election gets more than one million locals to the polls. This election, with no state-wide positions or hotly contested mayoral race just couldn't compete. Dr. Richard Murray is a professor of political science at the University of Houston and the director of the Center for Public Policy. He says the low turn-out is not unusual.
On top of that, Murray says most Houston area residents feel like the city is doing a pretty good job and passed on voting for what seemed like a lackluster election.
Even the much talked about Proposition Two didn't bring voters out in droves. Several campaigns, both for and against the same-sex marriage amendment, mobilized pockets of voters. But Harris County Democratic Party Chairman Jerry Birnberg says state-wide constitutional amendments, no matter how controversial, don't get people to the polls.
Next year's race for Texas Governor and other state positions should be much more exciting for voters.