Johnson County saw a slight increase in voter turnout


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Johnson County saw a slight increase in voter turnout in Tuesday’s midterm elections.

This year, 58.5 percent of voters casted their ballot, which is the equivalent of 52,336 votes out of 89,532 total registered voters — a 0.35 percentage point increase from the 2010 midterm elections.

In that election, 58.15 percent voters turned out to vote, in other words 53,855 total votes were casted out of 92,610 total registered voters, according to the Johnson County Auditor website.

Johnson County Auditor Travis Weipert said this is a sign that Johnson County is headed in the right direction.

“When it comes to turnout, I’m pretty happy with what we had tonight,” he said. “I think people are just more engaged.”

Weipert credits the higher turnout to convenient voting with mobile voting sites and early voting sites throughout campus.

“The easier we make it for voters, the more engaged they are and that’s what we like,” he said.

One of the big things he said brought extra voters to the booth was the open Senate seat, which Joni Ernst claimed, giving the U.S. Senate a Republican majority and becoming the first woman to represent Iowa in Congress.

Weipert was impressed with this year’s turnout especially because the 2010 election included the 21-ordinance. He said the ordinance drove up student voting dramatically because it was a topic that directly affected them.

Still, he said he would like to see turnout rates increase to reach the 90 percent range.

But for now he said he is happy the election is over, and said even though they didn’t see any major issues, they will go back to the drawing board to ensure future voting runs smoothly.

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