Washington Votor Turnout Hit Record Low For November 2017 Election

Dec 1, 2017

Washington voters set a record in the general election this month, but not one election officials are proud of.

Voter turnout was the lowest ever recorded for a Washington state general election, dating back to the 1930s.

About 37 percent of registered voters turned in a ballot. Turnout is typically lower in odd years, when there are no presidential or congressional elections. But turnout was, on average, 49 percent in the previous 10 odd-year elections.

Spokesperson Erich Ebel with the Secretary of State's office says there's one reason this year may have been so low.

"This is also the first time since 1985 that there were no initiatives and no referendum on the ballot, I mean that's a pretty significant factor when you're considering voter turnout, for people to voice their opinion,” Ebel said.

He said the Secretary of state's office is focused on increasing voter registration and turnout.

Some progressive groups said the state isn't doing enough to get people excited to vote.

Copyright 2017 KUOW