Chris Biggs’ office – Sec. Biggs Predicts 19% Turnout for Primary Election Next Tuesday

Immediate Release:                                                                                                           For More Information:

Friday, July 30th, 2010                                                                                Abbie Hodgson, 785-296-4580

Sec. Biggs Predicts 19% Turnout for Primary Election Next Tuesday

Challenges Kansans to prove him wrong

TOPEKA, KS – At a press conference in Topeka today, Kansas Secretary of State Chris Biggs projected that 324,000 of the approximately 1.7 million registered voters in Kansas will turnout to vote in the primary election next Tuesday, August 3rd.

“After looking at a variety of factors including recent turnout trends, the number of registered voters, and the number of contested elections, I am predicting that about 19 percent of registered voters will turn out to vote in the primary election,” Sec. Biggs said.

Historic Turnout

Year

Number of Registered Voters

Turnout

Percentage

2010

1,706,798

324,000

19%

2008

1,652,973

371,121

22.45%

2006

1,646,987

298,972

18.2%

2004

1,591,428

488,002

30.7%

2002

1,588,859

410,630

26%

2000

1,557,692

425,568

27%

Biggs noted that although the number of registered voters has increased since 2008, a large number of new voters registered to participate in last cycle’s presidential election and were not likely to be consistent voters.

“I am encouraged to see more and more Kansans registering to vote, and I am hopeful that each of them will make their voice heard at the polls,” Biggs said.

Registered Voters

Year

Republican

Democrat

Unaffiliated

Total*

2010

744,975

460,318

490,395

1,706,798

2008

741,786

449,058

451,631

1,652,971

2006

755,725

437,854

447,205

1,646,987

2004

730,049

428,728

421,946

1,591,428

2002

719,758

431,996

425,872

1,588,859

2000

696,480

430,410

416,971

1,557,692

*Includes Libertarian and Reform Party Candidates

Biggs also took into consideration, the number of advance ballots that have been cast to date.

“Advance voting is an increasing trend,” said Biggs. “For those who can’t make it to the polls on Election Day or for those who simply want the convenience of voting on their own time, the availability of advance voting helps to increase turnout.”

As of 8:00 a.m. today, 80,494 advance ballots had been mailed, 49,381 had been returned, and 12,423 additional ballots had been cast at satellite voting locations.

Advance Voting

Year

Total Voters

Advance Ballots Cast

Percent of Total Votes Cast

2008

371,121

75,384

20.31

2006

298,972

51,653

17.3

2004

488,002

62,531

12.8

2002

410,630

47,617

11.6

2000

425,568

44,512

10.6

Biggs cited the unusually high number of contested primaries, at both the state and the local level, as a reason the state might see slightly higher turnout this year.

“You have to go back more than ten years – to 1996 – to find a highly contested primary for the U.S. Senate,” Biggs said. “And you have to go back more than 15 years – to 1994 – to find as many open congressional seats.”

2010 Contested Primaries

Office

Number of

Contested Primaries

Democratic

Contested Primaries

Republican Contested Primaries

US Senate

2 of 2

1 of 1

1 of 1

US House

7 of 8

3 of 4

4 of 4

Gov / Lt. Gov

1 of 2

0 of 1

1 of 1

Sec of State

2 of 2

1 of 1

1 of 1

Atty General

1 of 2

0 of 1

1 of 1

State Treasurer

0 of 2

0 of 1

0 of 1

Comm of Insur

1 of 2

0 of 1

1 of 1

KS Senate

1 of 2

0 of 1

1 of 1

KS House

35 of 250

3 of 125

32 of 125

St. Board of Ed.

2 of 10

0 of 5

2 of 5

Before concluding the press conference, Biggs noted that Missouri is predicting 24 percent turnout and issued a challenge to voters.

“Although I have predicted less than 20 percent turnout, I challenge Kansans to go to the polls and prove me wrong,” Biggs said. “We are privileged to live in a nation where we have open and free elections, and as such, voting is not just your right, it is your duty.”

# # #

ABBIE HODGSON
Director of Public Affairs

Kansas Secretary of State
785-296-4580 P | 785-296-8577 F
Memorial Hall, 1st Floor | 120 SW 10th Ave. | Topeka, KS 66612-1594
www.kssos.org

Are you registered to vote? www.voteks.org

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