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At a glance: Vancouver advance polling

Experts are predicting high participation at the Vancouver municipal election November 15, due to increased turnout at advance polls. Early…

By Sarah Berman , in Elections , on November 13, 2008 Tags: , , , ,

Experts are predicting high participation at the Vancouver municipal election November 15, due to increased turnout at advance polls. Early voting has surged 73 per cent since the last municipal race in 2005.

Some argue the American election results have inspired Vancouver voters to incite government change, while others maintain convenience has encouraged participation. The following shows advance turnout per day, along with overall election turnout.

Overall advance poll participation

2002 Advance poll breakdown

Day 1: 2,829
Day 2: 3,477

Total: 6,306 early votes

Final turnout: 140,332 votes, or 50 per cent

2005 Advance poll breakdown

Day 1: 1,913
Day 2: 1,906
Day 3: 2,377
Day 4: 2,567

Total: 8,763 early votes, a 39 per cent increase

Final turnout: 132,072 votes, or 32 per cent

2008 Advance poll breakdown

Day 1: 3,625
Day 2: 4,003
Day 3: 3,423
Day 4: 4,137

Total: 15,188 early votes, a 73 per cent increase

Final turnout to be determined Nov. 15.

Interpreting the numbers

Although early voting has increased steadily over 3 elections (up 39 per cent in 2005, and an additional 73 per cent in 2008), overall participation actually decreased 18 per cent between 2002 and 2005. Experts attribute the lower turnout in 2005 to a lack of compelling election issues.

The participation increase is partially aided by extra advance poll days and locations, as well as more convenient advance voting protocol introduced in 2008.