What Does Low Turnout Mean?

I should probably wait until later this evening to ask this because we never know, there just might be a huge swell in voters in the last few hours.

But, does low turnout mean:

RR couldn’t GOTV?
Cynthia McKinney couldn’t GOTV?
Georgians just don’t care about elections, or at least this one?

I know that this over simplifies what could or could not be the factors for the low number of voters, but I am interested to see what the opinion is on these three points.
BTW: I am not Erick, nor is Erick me.


  1. GAWire says:

    Many say low turnout means good for Ralph. I’m not convinced of that. The bottom line is that we never can tell what low turnout means until after everything is over, and then all of the Monday morning quarterbacks say, “Yes, I knew low turnout would mean blah blah blah …”

    I can tell you this, though … the people that vote for Cynthia McKinney deserve her. More importantly, the people who do not vote against Cynthia McKinney deserve her even more!!!!!

  2. GAWire says:

    Btw, is anyone who is remotely associated with politics even a little bit surprised that turnout is low? Folks, it’s always low in the Primaries, yet every cycle low turnout is reported like its some sort of political phenomenon.

  3. Michael C says:

    It can mean anything you want it to. For me, in an off year election turnout in a primary was high compared to my previous experience.

  4. Briardawg says:

    I had to persuade my sister to go and vote today in Walton County. Her comment was that she was just turned off by the negativity of the all the commercials. A political junkie she is not, but she is a regular voter. I was surprised when I talked to her this morning that she was actually NOT going to cast a vote today because of the negativity. I changed her mind so I cannot help but wonder how many average non-political Georgians out there are thinking the same thing.

  5. Jeff Emanuel says:

    I’m just a little surprised, due to the inflammatory nature of a couple of the races, and the national recognition of one of the candidates, especially as a Christian Coalition fella here in the Bible belt. However, that’s a good point about primaries always being low.

  6. BahamaBoy says:

    Why do all the pundits agree that low turnout helps Reed?

    If his army of devoted Christians is as large and powerful as he, and they, claim, wouldn’t it stand to reason that they would sweep over the polling booths and consume Georgia in one fell swoop?

    Truth is Reed is afraid the voters of Georgia will actually show up at the polls today and vote for the best candidate to lead the state senate — and that candidate is NOT Ralph Reed!

    Summer primaries are notoriously low turnout events — probably because it suits the party bosses. But I suspect today’s turnout will surprise many, especially Reed.

    Of course, I could be wrong. Debbie and Peach often tell me I am.

  7. GAWire says:

    Bahama, I agree with you in that I am not convinced low turnout automatically helps Ralph. I do believe, however, that turnout will always be lower than expected, especially in summer Primaries, as you indicated.

    Either way, I don’t subscribe to the rationale that says low turnout = good for Ralph.

  8. bruce benidict says:

    you are getting pretty soft GAwire and Bahama boy…..I understand….Ralph has shown Georgia that Casey’s “I am not Ralph” stuff is not going to hold water with the folks that have appreciated what he has done for the party….but loyalty is expected to run thin with some folks….

  9. MorganCoGOP says:

    Thought it was interesting that Ralphie isn’t doing any interviews until after the polls close, according to WSBTV.

  10. BahamaBoy says:

    loyalty ?

    What loyalty? Where is Ralph’s loyalty to his friend and business associate of 20 years, convicted Indian swindler Jack Abramoff? Will Ralph seek a pardon for Jack from his pal, George W?

    Now THAT would show loyalty, Bruce.

  11. conservativecore says:

    I think if you start to read the reports from the field you will see that Reed may be in real trouble. I know in Cherokee he is in the fight of his life and at one time he was the poster child for those folks. This may end up being a huge blow out of the boy from brazil look alike. I think alot of the evangelicals have seen who the man behind the curtain really is and walked away.

  12. MorganCoGOP says:

    I think the Christian base that Ralph thought he was going to drive out in force are not supporting him at all. I know a lot of Christians, including Pastors, who have said they are supporting Casey Cagle. This includes Dr. Hunt at FBC Woodstock, that’s a lot of votes.

  13. GAWire says:

    i hope so, conservativecore. the only thing is that it seems like ralph started the day off well and then casey caught up around midday. i hope that doesn’t mean ralph will come back when it counts.

  14. GAWire says:

    Morgan, i agree that christian voters aren’t all going to Ralph. remember, they are notorious for not turning out to vote. and, if many support casey, then we can be sure ralph doesnt have them all

  15. Jeff Emanuel says:

    Late push for Cagle, according to one of my newsroon contacts. How much? We’ll have to see….

    How’s THAT for a tease, Bill “Hooters Girls Rock!” Simon? 🙂

  16. Oz says:

    Bahama Boy —

    Loyalty as in Ralph Reed was a major force in getting Sonny Perdue elected.

    As for me, I disagree with quite a few on this site about who to vote for, but I’ll close ranks behind all of the GOP candidates after tonight. I’m hoping the same will be true for the rest of you.

  17. Clint Austin says:

    This is an unusual election year for Republicans. Do not assume anything about what turnout means upfront.

  18. shep1975 says:

    “If you want somebody who will precide over the statis quo and go along to get along, then you want someone else.”

    That’s it.

  19. Clint Austin says:


    I think Ralph is off-message with voters. Every primary poll I have seen this year with one exception has shown Republican very happy with the state’s direction (after all, we’re in charge). 2-1 margin at least in most of the polls.

    He’s implicitly criticizing the governor and legislative leadership in an election year. Not the way to rally the troops I think.


  20. Jeff Emanuel says:

    Yep, that’s pretty much live blogging…see why you need to leave it to the pros? It’s pretty tough, and dangerous… ;-)Yep, that’s pretty much live blogging…see why you need to leave it to the pros? It’s pretty tough, and dangerous… 😉

  21. GAWire says:

    Btw, Kimmer is an idiot and WGST live streaming sucks. Anyways, I did think it was funny him making fun of candidates talking about how LG isn’t a stepping stone office and how they “really want to be Lt. Gov”

  22. GrandOleDawg says:

    I’m not sure about that. Reed has not been critical at all of Sonny, and only slightly (but never directly) been critical of the Senate. He HAS pointed out ways that he wants to improve things. As far as his “preside over status quo” line, that’s a pretty typical for someone who is not already part of a legislative body.

  23. warreniv says:

    Of course my wife called and asked me how to vote in the friggin’ Democratic race. I told her how the hell would I know that? Then I pulled up the AJC voters guide and gave her a couple of recommendations to get her through it. That’s why the voter turn out is so low. No one gives a damn.

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