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Paynesville Press - November 10, 2004

Minnesota tops nation again in voter turnout

By Michael Jacobson

voter turnout For the third straight national election, Minnesota topped the country in voter turnout with an estimated 77 percent of eligible voters in the state going to the polls and casting ballots on Tuesday, Nov. 2.

And voting turnout in the Paynesville area exceeded the state average, with most cities and townships having turnouts of 80 or 90 percent of eligible voters.

Stearns County had a voter turnout of 95.8 percent, Kandiyohi had a voter turnout of 93.7 percent, and Meeker County had a voter turnout of 92.3 percent.

Two voting precincts in the Paynesville area had more voters than their previous total of registered voters. In both the city of Roscoe and the city of St. Martin, thanks to same-day registrants, the voter total exceeded their previous number of registered voters.

The city of Lake Henry had the next highest turnout in the Paynes-ville area, with 53 of 54 registered voters casting ballots last week, or 98 percent.

According to the Committee for the Study of the American Electorate, said Secretary of State Mary Kiffmeyer, Minnesota's voter turnout of 77 percent ranked first in the country, followed by Wisconsin (74 percent), New Hampshire (72 percent), and South Dakota (68 percent).

"We had the highest voter turnout in the nation in 2000 and 2002," said Kiffmeyer (R-Big Lake), "and I'm pleased to be able to say that we've done it again here in 2004."

Minnesota's voter turnout in 2004, added Kiffmeyer, was the state's highest since 1960.

Nationwide, the voter turnout was around 60 percent for the 2004 election, according to CNN. This is the highest voter turnout since 1968. The Committee for the Study of the American Electorate, has computed national voter turnout in presidential years since 1924.

Year Turnout Winner

2000 51.0% George W. Bush
1996 49.0% Bill Clinton
1992 55.2% Bill Clinton
1988 50.1% George H. Bush
1984 53.1% Ronald Reagan
1980 52.6% Ronald Reagan
1976 53.5% Jimmy Carter
1972 55.2% Richard Nixon
1968 60.9% Richard Nixon
1964 61.9% Lyndon Johnson
1960 62.8% John Kennedy
1956 59.4% Dwight D. Eisenhower
1952 61.6% Dwight D. Eisenhower
1948 51.1% Harry Truman
1944 56.1% Franklin Roosevelt
1940 58.8% Franklin Roosevelt
1936 56.8% Franklin Roosevelt
1932 52.6% Franklin Roosevelt
1928 51.8% Herbert Hoover
1924 48.9% Calvin Coolidge

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