The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

Write for Us
Want your voice to be heard? Submit a letter to the editor, send us an op-ed pitch or check out our open positions for the chance to be published by the Daily Utah Chronicle.
@TheChrony
Print Issues
Write for Us
Want your voice to be heard? Submit a letter to the editor, send us an op-ed pitch or check out our open positions for the chance to be published by the Daily Utah Chronicle.
@TheChrony
Print Issues

Strength in numbers

By Jade Gray

Most students on campus have been asked, “Are you registered?” at least a few times over the past few weeks as volunteers have been registering students to vote for the Nov. 7 elections.

Next week marks the 2006 midterm elections, and the turnout could reflect the trend of young voter increases Utah has experienced in recent years.

According to a study conducted by CivicYouth.org, Utah’s young population wasn’t shy during the 2004 presidential elections. Fifty-nine percent of young people, aged 18 to 29, turned out to vote that year, which placed Utah ninth in the nation for highest youth-voter turnout.

One factor contributing to these numbers could be the fact that Utah has a younger population than the rest of the nation, as the U.S. Census Bureau estimated the median age of Utahns this year is 27.1. The national median age is 35.3 years.

The last midterm elections took place in 2002, when 22 percent of young Utahns hit the booths, a slight increase from the 1998 midterm election turnout.

Whether the upward trend will continue remains to be seen.

Alisa Smith, a senior gender studies major, said that a person’s party affiliation can have an effect on whether he or she votes.

“We’re in a Republican state, and a lot of students here at the U are Democrats and don’t vote because they feel their voices won’t be heard,” she said.

Smith also said that the reason people choose to vote nationally more than locally is because they are uneducated.

“We’re a generation taught only to care when something is really important,” she said. “People don’t realize that you can vote and change your situation if you vote in smaller elections versus just voting in the presidential election.”

Breanne Miller, political science major and member of the U College Democrats, agreed that education is most important in determining voter turnout.

“It’s slightly harder to get educated on local issues when voting as opposed to the national issues,” she said. “In the 2004 presidential elections, it seemed everyone knew what Bush and Kerry were about; it’s different with local elections.”

For more information on the ballot this year and voting locations, visit utah.gov.

Leave a Comment

Comments (0)

The Daily Utah Chronicle welcomes comments from our community. However, the Daily Utah Chronicle reserves the right to accept or deny user comments. A comment may be denied or removed if any of its content meets one or more of the following criteria: obscenity, profanity, racism, sexism, or hateful content; threats or encouragement of violent or illegal behavior; excessively long, off-topic or repetitive content; the use of threatening language or personal attacks against Chronicle members; posts violating copyright or trademark law; and advertisement or promotion of products, services, entities or individuals. Users who habitually post comments that must be removed may be blocked from commenting. In the case of duplicate or near-identical comments by the same user, only the first submission will be accepted. This includes comments posted across multiple articles. You can read more about our comment policy at https://dailyutahchronicle.com/comment-faqs/.
All The Daily Utah Chronicle Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *