Election Numbers Showcase Decline in Spite of the Candidates


Well the presidential election of 2016 has come and gone, and the nation seems more divided than ever. However, this not a statement to rile up the winners and losers this election, but rather to make clear,  that despite the controversy heading into the polls, more than half the nation has been tallied as “didn’t vote”. Now it is important to note that Mashable, who has the initial numbers may wrong in the actual totals, but what is painfully clear is that as it stands now 46.6% of Americans didn’t vote.  Their statistics are based on eligible voters in the US which is a staggering 231,556,622. This kind of information becomes massive media news, so its no wonder Mashable (among many others) would jump at the story, but one has to wonder if such stories aren’t a bit premature.  The thing really sticks out here is how even the media hype about the candidates misdeeds and constant social media coverage could encourage from producing one the lowest turnout rates in the 20 years. It is a shame too, because journalists and the media couldn’t stop posturing about what would happen when either candidate were to win. Perhaps journalists did their jobs too well or maybe not well enough, with focus on things interview tapes and email scandals rather political issues, which turned this election into a sideshow. So in a way the media did its due diligence, but perhaps as a result of so attention on the candidates personal lives and private dealings, the political issues, aka the things the president takes care of in office got lost in the shuffle. Combine that with media over-saturation in terms of ads and the conditions the media created for the election might have been so unappealing that people refused to vote as a result. Covering politics during an election is important, but I think this election proved how easy it can be for the media to get sidetracked under certain conditions and leave the general public to piece together certain political agendas, which is something most people don’t want to do or at least they shouldn’t have to just because the information’s availability on the internet. In that sense, the media could be seen as partly responsible for the lack of voter turnout, although that in it of itself is little more than speculation at this point. It will be interesting to see how the media finishes out its coverage of this year’s election.

Link to Mashable Article

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2 Responses to “Election Numbers Showcase Decline in Spite of the Candidates”

  1. There’s a lot of criticism the media has to digest after the election, but I’m not sure I agree that suppressing the vote is something that the media could be blamed for. Your points are valid, but when I look at this issue from the voter’s point of view, I think there were many other reasons voters would decide not to turn out. There’s a huge group of people out there that want nothing to do with politics. They tune it out completely. Could the media do more to promote turnout? Probably, but there’s a giant proportion of that 46 percent that wouldn’t turn out no matter what the media does. Just my take.

  2. It is interesting how low it was because it was such an important election. It may be one of the most important of our lifetimes and that would lead me to think people would participate. I know many people didn’t like either candidate but I was watching Monday Night Football, and Chris Berman said “it is our duty” or something along those lines. I couldn’t agree more with that. If there is one thing we can do to decide where our country goes, it is to vote on who will lead us. There are also man other elections to vote for besides the presidential that are very important. Interesting article!

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