Poor voter turnout expected for election
Without much to decide in the general election, four in five voters are expected to stay away from the polls Tuesday.
In a ballot with few contested races, battles for mayor in Monessen and Elizabeth as well as an election for Rostraver Township commissioner dot the ballot.
There are a series of mostly marginal school board races – the result of a system that allows candidates to cross-file in both Democratic and Republican primary elections.
In cases in which candidates did not win both party nominations, some hopefuls still are campaigning for election.
Still, most voters will find few or no contested races on ballots at their polls. That, along with growing voter apathy, will combine for low turnout.
Washington County Elections Bureau Director Larry Spahr predicted turnout to be around 22 percent, matching the feeble turnout from the primary election.
He based the projection on absentee ballots, which matched spring levels.
“There's hardly any deviation at all from the May primary,” Spahr said.
James Montini, director of elections for Westmoreland County, said he expects turnout to be “20 to 25 percent.”
“There doesn't seem to be much interest in the election,” Montini said. “A lack of contested races could keep it down.”
Mark Wolosik, division manager for the Allegheny County Elections division, predicted turnout will be 25 percent, in line with the 2009 general election, when turnout countywide was 24.01 percent.
“I think, generally, municipal election years are off years,” Wolosik said. “You see low turnout in municipal elections. In national elections, there is so much coverage of them.”
Larry Blosser, Fayette County Election Bureau director, said turnout could be less than 20 percent.
“There's nothing there,” Blosser said. “There's no opposition in the county races, and there's no competition for the municipal races.”
Newcomers Lou Mavrakis, the Democratic nominee, and GOP nominee Robert Zynosky Jr. are trying to become Monessen mayor.
Mavrakis defeated Mayor Mary Jo Smith in the primary.
In Elizabeth, incumbent Mayor David Householder, a Republican, is facing Democrat V. Ann Malady.
In Donora, the race for mayor is not limited to the ballot.
Mayor John Lignelli is unopposed – officially. But newcomer John Lunt is attempting a write-in campaign.
Rostraver Commissioner Patrick Egros is the lone incumbent on the ballot, joined by fellow Democrat Ray Iacoboni and Republican nominees Jared Naylor and Devin De Rienzo.
There are council races in New Eagle, Perryopolis, North Belle Vernon and Smithton as well as supervisor races in Nottingham, Union and West Pike Run townships.
Poor voter turnout is a trend, Wolosik said.
“Turnout just continues to drop,” Wolosik said. “I think they're just not as interested in the process.”
Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Rostraver business site ordered to close
- Crew Mission volunteers will decorate home of Rostraver family
- Colonial leaders extended legacy to Mon Valley towns
- Fayette City in search of better times
- Monongahela paramedic dies in the line of duty
- Mon Valley preparing for Small Business Saturday
- Monongahela grad inducted into state Sports Hall of Fame
- DEP cites Monessen coke plant 6 times
- Yesteryear journey follows familiar path to many newsmakers
- Hospital leaders brighten holidays for kids
- No one can time the market