Voters can’t take elections for granted
Wednesday, Jul 09, 2014 02:43 pm
When less than 20 per cent of voters actually take the time to cast a ballot, itís a cause for concern.
Only 18,243 of 92,007 eligible voters in the Macleod riding voted on June 30. It wasnít just Macleod that saw low turnout, even fewer people voted in Fort McMurray-Athabasca.
There could be a number of reasons for the abysmal voter turnout in last weekís Macleod byelection.
With an election held on a Monday before the Canada Day holiday, itís likely more people were thinking about having an extra-long weekend off than voting. As well, last weekís vote was a byelection and itís a likely more people will cast a ballot at next yearís federal election.
The low turnout could also be a result of apathy or displeasure over the federal governmentís direction. Or, it could have been complacency or confidence of a guaranteed Conservative victory in Macleod.
If this is the case, Macleod MPĖelect John Barlow has a lot of work ahead of him to reconnect with voters and improve communication to get people engaged with the political process.
Almost 37,000 people who voted Conservative in 2011 for former Macleod MP Ted Menzies in 2011 did not bother to vote Conservative this time around.
The same message goes for political parties and whoever ends up running as candidates in next yearís election.
In the end, itís up to Canadians to take the time to cast their ballot come election time.
Wether itís a byelection or a general vote, people canít afford to take it for granted.