Nov 3, 2021 - News

Philadelphia sees low election turnout

Election Turnout in Philly
Data: The Office of the Philadelphia City Commissioners; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

A lack of competitive local races appears to have dampened turnout in Tuesday's election.

Driving the news: Turnout was 18.4% with 96% of divisions reporting Tuesday morning, according to unofficial results posted on the City Commissioners' website.

  • The final results from Tuesday’s election will take a few days to complete, said Nick Custodio, a deputy under City Commissioner Lisa Deeley.

What they're saying: Patrick Christmas, policy director for the nonprofit city government watchdog group Committee of Seventy, said Tuesday marked "one of the most quiet elections we've had in a long time."

  • "The main driver of turnout anywhere is going to be a competitive election, and we did not have that in the city of Philadelphia today," Christmas said.
  • Christmas expected the final turnout figures to be 20-25%, which is typical for off-year local elections.

Details: The city received approximately 67,434 mail-in ballots heading into Election Day, Custodio said.

  • Christmas expects more voters to cast their ballots via mail in the future, noting that this was the first off-year election in which mail-in ballots were permitted.

The latest: Democrat Larry Krasner was leading in the district attorney race with 69% of the vote over Republican Charles Peruto's 30%, according to unofficial results.

  • The race was never seen as competitive, as registered Democrats outnumber Republicans seven to one in the city.

Meanwhile, Democrat Rebecca Rhynhart secured another four-year term as city controller. She ran uncontested.

Voters appeared to approve all four ballot questions, according to unofficial results, which included calling on state leaders to legalize cannabis and establishing a new city Department of Fleet Services.


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