April 18, 2011
FRANKFORT, Ky. – The final count for voter turnout in the 2011 Kentucky primary election was 10.34%, becoming one of the lowest voter turnouts in Kentucky history.
Two obvious problems affecting voter turnout in Kentucky are a closed primary system and partisan voter registration, which have both been found to restrict voter participation.
Although some members of the Kentucky Legislature and Michael P. W. Lewis, Chairman of Independent Kentucky, have been introducing bills which would allow open primaries, recent attempts have fallen just short of passing.
This afternoon, Lewis met with US Congressman John Yarmuth, who said he believed partisan voter registration was partly to blame for low primary turnout.
Michael Lewis said he was optimistic about the possibility of a national dialog dedicated to open primaries after his meeting with Yarmuth.
“He seemed to concede some of our points, and was very receptive,” said Lewis.
Independent Kentucky remains dedicated to working toward open primaries and non-partisan voter registration for Kentucky and American voters.
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Contact: William Bowe, Communications Director
Only 10 percent turn out to cast their votes (By Janet Patton and Jennifer Hewlett, Lexington Herald Leader) That's the lowest turnout in a gubernatorial primary election since 1999, when only 8.6 percent of voters went to the polls. In 2003, 21 percent voted; in 2007, 22 percent voted.