OUR VIEW: Local voter turnout up in 2012 over 2008


By Daily News • Last Updated 9:14 pm on Friday, March 02, 2012

Voter turnout was high Tuesday — relatively speaking, that is.

Just over 20 percent (8,342 people) of Montcalm County’s 41,562 registered voters participated in the primary election.

Yes, that’s only two out of every 10 registered voters, but it’s better than 2008, when only 17.5 percent participated in that primary election.

The Montcalm County sheriff’s law enforcement millage lost by only 120 votes. We’re curious how the proposal might have turned out if more than just 20 percent of us had cared enough to visit our local city or township hall on Tuesday.

Locally, Sidney Township voters led the way with a 26 percent voter turnout. Here’s how other cities and townships rated from most voter participation to least:

• Maple Valley Township — 26 and 25 percent (two precincts)
• Eureka Township 25 and 23 percent (two precincts)
• City of Greenville — 25, 23, 20 and 8 percent (four precincts)
• Bloomer Township — 23 percent
• Day Township — 23 percent
• Pine Township — 23 percent
• Cato Township — 22 percent
• Douglass Township — 22 percent
• Fairplain Township — 22 percent
• Belvidere Township — 20 percent
• Bushnell Township — 20 percent
• Evergreen Township —  20 and 18 percent (two precincts)
• Ferris Township — 20 percent
• Montcalm Township — 20 percent
• Richland Township — 20 percent
• Crystal Township — 19 percent
• City of Carson City — 18 percent
• Home Township — 18 percent
• Pierson  Township — 18 percent
• Winfield Township — 18 percent
• City of Stanton — 17 percent
• Reynolds Township — 16 and 14 percent (two precincts)

While Mitt Romney won the state of Michigan on Tuesday, Ron Santorum won Montcalm County with 44.5 percent of the vote. Santorum was followed by Romney with 33 percent, Ron Paul with almost 13 percent and Newt Gingrich with just 5 percent.

We noticed something odd Tuesday — 54 people cast their vote for presidential candidates who had dropped out of the running some time ago.

Michele Bachmann received 20 votes, Rick Perry had 17 votes, Jon Huntsman had 9 votes and Herman Cain had 8 votes.

These 54 voters were either unaware these candidates had dropped out of the race, or just didn’t care. We’re not sure which option is more troubling.

Seems like 54 wasted votes to us.

Editorial opinions are a consensus of The Daily News editorial board.

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