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Sanders Wrong on Voter Turnout

Sen. Bernie Sanders wrongly claimed that voter turnout in 2016 was “the lowest … in 20 years.” In fact, turnout was higher than it was in 2012.

Sanders’ Shaky Turnout Claim

Bernie Sanders claims that “Democrats win when the voter turnout is high” and “Republicans win when the voter turnout is low.” But past voter turnout numbers and research on what could happen with higher turnout don’t support such a definitive statement.

Trump Touts GOP Turnout

Donald Trump said that when it comes to primary voter turnout so far “the Democrats are down 35 percent, whereas the Republicans are up over 70 percent.” Trump is nearly accurate if the comparison is to 2008, but that year was an outlier for Democrats.

2008 Voter Turnout

Q: Is it true that 36 percent to 37 percent of eligible voters failed to vote in the recent presidential election?
A:Actually, the number is slightly higher than that: 38.4 percent of eligible voters didn’t cast a ballot for president in 2008. Even more — 39.9 percent — didn’t vote in 2006.