Boosting voter turnout is an honorable quest

Print Article

Many citizens gripe about low voter turnout.

A few write letters to the editor, sounding an encouraging note.

Give Jessica Mahuron credit for actually trying to do something about it.

Mahuron is the organizer of Saturday’s Civic Action Festival. The fest will take place from 4-8 p.m. at City Park in downtown Coeur d’Alene. Goals include emphasizing civility in this time of high incivility, introducing citizens to local candidates, and thus increasing the likelihood that more people — including the young — will participate in the Nov. 6 general election.

As political events tend to do, this one has been highly politicized. Overtly or more subtly, a number of Republicans have dissed the event as a thinly veiled Democratic plot to promote the blue slate of candidates. Republicans, these critics say, were not extended the same welcome to participate as their opponents.

Regardless, a front page story in this newspaper shortly before the deadline for candidates to register shed light on the event and accompanying controversy. Members of any party or political persuasion were invited to participate. If they chose not to at that point, that’s not Mahuron’s fault.

For those who will be there Saturday, thank you. For everybody else, there’s work to do.

Kootenai County had Idaho’s lowest turnout in the May primary election. Perhaps more disappointing than that overall flat note was this: Only 3 percent of registered Kootenai County voters between the ages of 18 and 25 bothered to cast ballots. If anyone questioned the disconnect between our youngest potential voters and the right and responsibility to participate, last May 15 provided Exhibit A.

But it wasn’t just the youngsters who stayed away. In the age 25-40 group, 9 percent voted. In the age 40-50 group, 10 percent cast ballots. And in the age 50-60 group, 15 percent voted. Only when you reached the over-60 club did you see decent numbers: 63 percent voter turnout. That represented 78 percent of all ballots cast in Kootenai County.

That was a primary election so the general will certainly fare better. If it gets a boost from Mahuron’s efforts, then a little controversy will have been a small price to pay.

Print Article

Read More

Trump wants California to pay back billions for bullet train

AP

February 19, 2019 at 10:17 pm | SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The Trump administration said Tuesday that it plans to cancel $929 million awarded to California's high-speed rail project and wants the state to return an additional $2.5 b...

Comments

Read More

Asian shares mostly higher, extending Wall St advance

AP

February 19, 2019 at 9:03 pm | BANGKOK (AP) — Shares were mostly higher in Asia on Wednesday after a modestly high finish on Wall Street that extended the market's gains into a fourth week. The Nikkei 225 index rose 0.6 percen...

Comments

Read More

Talking and beyond

February 19, 2019 at 3:57 pm | Coeur d'Alene Press A counseling session with a therapist or psychologist can go many different ways depending on the person and the type of help they are seeking. For some, counseling can mean multiple sessions wit...

Comments

Read More

Mix It Up hosting giveaway for Make-A-Wish Idaho

February 19, 2019 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press The dreams of nearly 30 North Idaho children, who are suffering from serious and terminal conditions, have been put on hold. "We have quite a few kids waiting up there," said Jessica Budzi...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(208) 664-8176
215 N. Second St
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83814

©2019 The Coeur d'Alene Press Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X