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Electoral Participation in the United States, 1968-86

Erik W. Austin, Jerome M. Clubb, William H. Flanigan, Peter Granda and Nancy H. Zingale
Legislative Studies Quarterly
Vol. 16, No. 1 (Feb., 1991), pp. 145-164
Published by: Washington University
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/439972
Page Count: 20
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Electoral Participation in the United States, 1968-86
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Abstract

In this paper voter turnout in state legislative elections is explored and compared with turnout in other state and national races from 1968 through 1986. The relationship between turnout and margin of victory is then examined in both state house and state senate elections. Overall, the pattern of turnout in elections to select members of state legislatures is not distinctively different from the pattern in other races. Voter turnout behaves as a system that persists throughout the United States, despite the almost endless variation in districting arrangements, competitive patterns, and legal practices employed to fill the nearly 7,500 available seats at the state legislative level.

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