Voter Turnout…What’s Happening?


Voter Turnout...What's Happening?

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In Chapter 4, Qualman cites a statistic claiming that close to 65 percent of the American population voted in the 2008 election. While that has some impact on the argument being made for the power of social media, a better figure to use when comparing historical numbers is the VAP, or voting age population.

Do a little research on the historical voter turnouts during the past three-four decades. Compare these turnouts to 2008, 2004, and even back to 1996 (Clinton/Dole election).

Create a blog post under “Politics”  discussing your findings. How did voter turnout in the more recent elections (particularly the last 3-4) compare to historical trends? Remember to look at VAP statistics if you can. Do you think these figures suggest MORE people are voting now than before? Why or why not? What role, if any, do you feel social media has in this trend? Do you think social media is making the population more informed, or is it turning the election into strictly a numbers game based on popularity?

Finally, as your generation begins to enter the voting age, what implications do you see for the elections? What does your generation have the capacity to do to the election process given the exposure and knowledge of social media?



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