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Voter Apathy

April 9, 1996
Voter apathy seems parallel to the Democrats recent apathy toward American workers; this means no distinctive difference between the two parties. KENNETH JOHNSON Pinion Hills
May 10, 2012 | By David Lauter, Washington Bureau
MADISON, Wis. - When Tim Cullen returned to the Wisconsin state Senate after an absence of 24 years, he might have been an ideal bridge between the state's warring parties. A former three-term Democratic Senate majority leader, Cullen had left the Legislature in 1987 to become an influential Cabinet secretary under then-Gov. Tommy Thompson, a Republican. He won his election in 2010 with significant support from both parties, representing one of the state's bellwether regions.
November 2, 1990
A high voter turnout should not be the primary goal. An informed voter turnout is to be preferred. I would support a requirement that addressed familiarity with issues, understanding or interest. JERRY MILLS Vista
October 1, 2010 | By Ashley Powers and Mark Z. Barabak, Los Angeles Times
On a recent Saturday, Ken Adams and Ronald Ramsey went door-to-door in Las Vegas, canvassing for Harry Reid. They carried a map of Democratic households and a set of poll-tested talking points, including the senator's achievements ("$540 million for a brand new VA hospital") and jabs at Republican rival Sharron Angle, who spoke of privatizing the Department of Veterans Affairs (on public radio in May, if anyone asked). A woman in pajamas promised to cast a straight-party ballot.
April 25, 1992
Does Bill Clinton really have a "serious credibility problem" with voters (April 16)? I hadn't noticed. I was too busy watching the media sensationalizing everything about him except what matters to me. Next time, how about a front-page article on Clinton's vision for America? Leave the other stuff for the tabloids. DAN FINN Lake Forest
July 3, 2009 | Ken Ellingwood
Mexicans vote Sunday, but the biggest story may be how many don't bother. At stake are all 500 seats in the lower house of Congress, six governorships and scores of local posts. But apathy and disgust with politics are rampant. Many voters plan to deface their ballots in protest. Every campaign, however, offers moments that are memorable, incongruous, weird. Here are a few tidbits from Mexico, the 2009 edition. The name says green, but the stance is pure red meat.
April 10, 2008 | Bruce Wallace, Times Staff Writer
A small bonus awaited South Koreans who voted in Wednesday's parliamentary elections at polling stations like the Jae Dong Elementary School in downtown Seoul. Before voters could leave the classroom-turned-polling station, election worker Lee Jae-gwang would spring to his feet and press a colorful $2 voucher into their hands, a discount for entry to government-run museums, parks and even parking lots.
May 16, 2005 | Cynthia Corona, Cynthia Corona is a veteran L.A. political strategist who has worked on campaigns for governor, Congress and the City Council. E-mail: CynthiaCorona900
In the city of Los Angeles, there are 1.4 million people registered to vote for mayor on Tuesday. Yet the city clerk estimates that only 30% of registered voters will actually vote in the runoff. Why? Well, conventional wisdom would have us believe that voter apathy is responsible for low voter turnout. But that tells only a part of the story. In many cases, it is not that people do not care enough to vote, but that they are oblivious of the election.
May 14, 2005 | Kafi Blumenfield
Voter apathy? It's just not that simple. For nearly a year now, I've been overseeing a nonpartisan voter education and mobilization program in lowincome L.A. communities where voter turnout is lowest. I've learned that what some people call "voter apathy" is a misnomer that masks a whole range of problems and discontents. As the director of LibertyVote!, I work with about a dozen community organizations in Pico-Union, downtown Los Angeles, South L.A., Boyle Heights and Pacoima.
October 29, 2004
Re "Voters Still Split Sharply, and Evenly," Oct. 26: The question in the Times poll is, "If you had to vote today, for whom would you vote?" and 3% of the people answered, "Don't know." The operative word in the question is "today." How do you not know for whom to vote, people? What would you do if you were in the voting booth right now -- stand there confused, scratching your head? Would you flip a coin? What more information could you possibly need to make up your mind? It's either going to be President Bush or John Kerry -- pick one!
June 9, 2003 | Jeffrey Fleishman and Ela Kasprzycka, Times Staff Writers
Urged by their countryman Pope John Paul II and prodded by political leaders who said it was time to claim their place on the world stage, Poles overcame a tradition of voter apathy Sunday and were overwhelmingly approving a referendum on joining the European Union, according to early results from the vote. The vote is expected to lift this economically troubled nation closer to the prosperity of Western Europe and underscores Poland's enhanced stature as a global player that backed the U.S.
November 21, 2002
Re "Replay of Reagan-Era Voting Patterns Is Not Good News for Democrats," Nov. 18: In his column cataloging the woes of the Democrats, Ronald Brownstein glosses over the main reason they lost so many races. It's the same one as always -- voter apathy. Do the math: If a combined total of roughly 91,000 Democrats who did not vote had voted in three states (Missouri, Minnesota and New Hampshire), those states would have sent Democrats to the Senate, the party would have a solid majority and it would be President Bush, Karl Rove and Marc Racicot feeling the heat.
November 8, 2002 | Anthony Day, Special to The Times
Why don't more Americans vote? From 1920, when women first started voting, the percentage of voting-age citizens who voted for president rose steadily to a high, in 1960, of 62.8%. It has been falling since; in 1996 it was 48.9%; in 2000, 51.2%. Tuesday's low voter turnout, especially in California, is no exception to that trend. Even as registering to vote has been made easier, Martin P. Wattenberg explains, the decline has continued. "Where Have All the Voters Gone?"
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