Hawaii ranks dead last in voter turnout for 2016 election
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Hawaii ranks dead last in voter turnout for 2016 election

  • JAMM AQUINO / jaquino@staradvertiser.com

    Oahu residents Jesse Garrett, left, and Ron Powell fill out voter registration forms as Honolulu elections clerk Marie Ganoot stands by at right on Oct. 10 at the State Capitol. Voter turnout in Hawaii was the lowest in the nation for the 2016 presidential election, a report released today says.

In the 2016 presidential election, Hawaii once again had the ignoble distinction of leading the country with the lowest percentage of voter turnout, 43 percent, according to a study released today.

Hawaii ranked dead last in participation by eligible voters, followed by West Virginia (50.8 percent); Texas (51.6 percent); Tennessee (52 percent); and Arkansas (53.1%).

It was the fifth-consecutive presidential election in which the report by Nonprofit VOTE and the U.S. Elections Project concluded that Hawaii had the lowest voter turnout in the nation.

All of the states with low voter turnout were in the bottom five for the third-consecutive presidential election, according to the latest “America Goes to The Polls” report.

The report said that none of the five lowest voter turnout states, led by Hawaii, were so-called battleground states with hotly contested presidential races.

And all five states did not let people register or update their voter registrations three to four weeks before Election Day, according to the organizations.

Overall, the 2016 nationwide voter turnout of 60.2 percent of eligible voters was up 1.6 percentage points compared with 2012’s 58.6 percent turnout.

The six states with the highest voter turnouts were led by Minnesota (74.8 percent); Maine (72.8 percent); New Hampshire (72.5 percent); Colorado (72.1 percent); Wisconsin (70.5 percent); and Iowa (69 percent).

All six offered same-day voter registration and allowed voters to register or update their registrations when they vote. Five were battleground states targeted by the presidential campaigns, according to “America Goes to The Polls.”

“Voter participation is at the core of active citizenship and a healthy democracy,” Brian Miller, executive director of Nonprofit VOTE, said in a statement. “This report offers the reader an opportunity to learn from the practical experience of policies already enacted in many states to promote voting, encourage healthy competition, and improve election integrity.”

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To view the full report, go to www.americagoestothepolls.org.

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