Update on M66/67 Turnout: Lag increases in Multnomah and statewide

Paul Gronke

At the request of a number of posters and emailers, I am updating last week's posting on turnout trends for measures 66 and 67.  Janice Thompson of Common Cause Oregon suggested that the Feb 2004 special election on a temporary income tax surcharge and change to the corporate minimum is another good comparison.  There is, of course, questions about the over time comparability of these turnout numbers.

There are other Blue Oregon posters with far more experience than me on voter mobilization efforts in Oregon.  I'm mainly a statistician and election reform specialist.  But my political antenna tell me that these figures aren't encouraging.  Turnout in Multnomah is lagging statewide, and the trends aren't upwards. I'm looking for a good reason why Multnomah County voters would be holding their ballots.

A few notes about the numbers.  First, Multnomah's data for today was last updated at 4:30 and may be lagging true turnout over the weekend.  Second, the state runs about one day behind Multnomah.

Sorry for the quality of the cut and paste; click on the graphics and you'll get far superior images.

Untitled Image MC
Untitled Image state

  • (Show?)

    Hmm.... I am figuring out how to use TypePad apparently. The graphics look pretty good.

  • Brilliant (unverified)

    This is brilliant!


  • What's next? (unverified)

    Paul, thanks for putting up these numbers. Although I don't identify much with the activist community supporting M66&M67 (which is not to say I don't support them, voted for both of them in fact), I have been the one trying to convince friends who identify more with those kind of folks these were going to pass. (Boy was I wrong.) I believe the sentiment expressed in the blog post Brilliant linked is alive and well in Oregon. And that we have a problem is a Democratic party leadership and hangers-on like who hang out there don't realize just how arrogant, incompetent, and out-of-touch with the values of most folks the voters perceive them to be.

    These measures actually are relatively populist and progressive both in their structure and in the types of government expenditures they preserve. To the extent that is true, that means they lost because the Democratic establishment lacks the political leadership ability to communicate that to the voters who elected them. (Where have Kate Brown, Ben Westlund, and John Kroger, three Democrats elected statewide, been during this campaign?)

    We lost a chance in MA to find out why voters voted the way they did because there was no exit polling that research confirms that if it's done even moderately well does captures the reasons people voted they way they did. We screwed ourselves in Oregon in this regard long ago with our childish VBM system that doesn't actually increase voter participation but just makes regular voters lazier. As a researcher, how much do you believe our inability to collect "first reaction" data why voters voted they way they did in this or any election contributes to how out of touch Democratic party leadership and hangers-on are? And do you have any suggestions how we can actually start to collect meaningful "first reaction" data in our dysfunctional system of VBM?

    As one sign of this utter dysfunction of this system, I am always struck by the signs they post that politicking is illegal and criminally punishable within so many feet of official ballot drop-off locations that relatively few people use. This, even though it is perfectly legal to politick any voter for the entire two weeks they have a ballot in the VBM system so long as someone is not doing it within so many feet of those official ballot drop-off locations.

  • Bob Soper (unverified)

    What a depressing situation, but not surprising. Most of my friends (who stand to lose the most if these measures fail) just don't seen to give a ****.

  • Polly Pure Bread (unverified)

    The people who will decide this election aren't the people posting on Blue O and other political blogs. It's going to be those with either a passing interest (and knowledge of) politics, or those more interested in American Idol than in the actual well-being of the state in which they reside.

    Therefore, my proposal is for the campaigns heretofore to simply deploy the proper mascots and symbols of their respective ideologies:

    For the YES campaign: I give you Lisa Simpson. For the NO campaign: It's Montgomery Burns.

    Who's worldview do you prefer? Okay, now proceed to fill out your ballot accordingly.

  • Buckman Res (unverified)

    It will be interesting to see if the political earthquake that took place in Mass yesterday sends shock waves all the way to Ore and influences voting on these unfair tax proposals.

    The movement that voted for real change and less lip service a year ago is still out there and waiting to see results. A large part of it demands government to spend less and when necessary tax in a fair, equitable manner.

    Unfortunately those in power aren’t getting the message.

  • Kurt Slipsager (unverified)

    I wonder if the holiday on Monday could have caused a "blip" in the data? Got my fingers crossed, we (Oregonians) need this to pass.

  • The Oregon Leopard Party (unverified)

    That's brilliant Polly! Would you consider being our party strategist?

    Five simple principles so far:

  • some Oregonians aren't of any "political stripe". we are the leopard party; a leopard doesn't change its spots
  • we don't run candidates for office; more can be accomplished working issue by issue and picking candidates to support wherever our interests coincide
  • no one gets ahead until everyone gets ahead
  • government is about how we live, and we have to live in harmony with the environment
  • government runs on software; open source, documented software must be the rule

    But we need the kind of probing banality that hits Americans where they live, and you clearly have an eye for that! We also have a bit of an image prob at the moment that the feline imagery doesn't go with the party song, Nazareth's Son of a Bitch . There's also the perception that "red hot mama" is a reference to "lady liberty". Yes, time has come to pay your dues...