Swift County voter turnout hits 70%

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In the Nov. 6 mid-term elections, Minnesota was number one in the nation for voter turnout with 64.25 percent of eligible voters casting ballots.

Swift County was among the top counties in a state that is perennially near the top, or number one, in voter turnout each election cycle.

Swift County had a voter turnout of 70 percent. There were 5,615 voters registered as of 7 a.m., Nov. 6, with another 203 registering at the polls. Of those registered in the county, 4,077 voted. “Very nice turnout,” Swift County Auditor Kim Saterbak said of the county’s voter participation.

“It’s now official: For the second election in a row, Minnesota’s voter participation was the best in America,” Secretary of State Steve Simon said. The total number of voters was 2,611,365. That means 64.25 percent of eligible Minnesotans participated in the 2018 election, surpassing the next closest state, Colorado, by more than a full percentage point.

“That is the highest percentage turnout in a non-presidential election in Minnesota since 2002, and the highest total number of midterm voters ever,” according to Simon.

“Though we continue to lead the nation in participation, there is still much more we need to do to make democracy meaningful and accessible for everyone,” he said. “We can and will do more to encourage participation by young people, communities of color, new Americans, rural communities, military service members, voters with disabilities, and citizens of all kinds who are disillusioned or disgusted with politics. Our freedom depends on it.”

Minnesota’s high voter turnout could be attributed to two U.S. senators being on the ballot in November. Democrat Tina Smith, who was appointed to fill the unexpired term of Sen. Al Franken  in December 2017after his resignation, had to stand for election to fill the final two years in the six-year term. She had served as the Dayton’s lieutenant governor prior to the appointment.

Democrat Amy Klobuchar was seeking re-election to a third term; both won re-election in their races. The state was also electing a new governor with Democrat Tim Walz defeating Republican challenger Jeff Johnson.

Swift County’s high voter turnout could also be attributed to eight candidates seeking three seats on the District 777 Board of Education with four seats open on the seven-member body. The school district includes all of central Swift County.

 

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