Welcome!

News Feed Item

Pew Index Shows 40 States Improved Election Performance in 2012

Waits reduced 3 minutes; District of Columbia is most improved; 6 states at bottom a 3rd time

WASHINGTON, April 8, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Between 2008 and 2012, state election performance overall improved by 4.4 percentage points, according to The Pew Charitable Trusts' latest Elections Performance Index, released today. The expanded index makes it possible for all 50 states and the District of Columbia to measure how well they conducted elections compared not only with other states, but also over time.

This annual study allows states to measure election administration by looking at such indicators as wait times at polling locations, availability of voting information tools online, rejection of voter registrations, problems with registration or absentee ballots, rejection of military and overseas ballots, voter turnout, and accuracy of voting technology.

"We know common-sense solutions to improve elections exist. States are pioneering innovations that make a real difference in the efficiency and accuracy of their elections operations while also saving money," said David Becker, director of Pew's election initiatives project. "The Election Performance Index allows policymakers to pinpoint what's working while also identifying areas where improvement is needed."

Overall, 40 states and the district improved their scores in the 2012 election, compared with 2008. The scores of 21 states and the district rose at a rate greater than the national average, 19 states' averages improved but didn't keep pace with the national average, and 10 states' performance declined. The district improved the most—20 points—from 2008 to 2012 but still remained among the lower performers.

Overall, Georgia showed the sharpest decline, dropping 7 points from 2008 to 2012. The state's voter turnout fell below the national average, and the state had one of the largest increases in nonvoting due to disability or illness. Georgia also did not add online voter registration or post-election audits of voting equipment performance, which many other states have implemented since 2008. Hawaii and Vermont also had large drops in overall performance.

Other findings:

  • 13 states offered online voter registration in 2012, compared with just two in 2008.
  • Wait times decreased, on average, about 3 minutes since 2008. Florida had the longest wait and the largest increase in wait time in 2012—up 16.1 minutes from 2008 to 2012. Although both South Carolina and Georgia had long wait times in 2012, they also had the largest decreases, down 36.3 and 19.8 minutes, respectively.
  • 18 states and the district reported 100 percent complete data in 2012, compared with only seven in 2008. Improved data collection allows analysts to more finely assess how well elections are run and how to fine-tune them.
  • Overall voter turnout dropped 3.4 percentage points in 2012 from 2008. Turnout percentages in the Midwest and Northeast were higher than in the South in 2012. Two Midwestern states—Minnesota and Wisconsin—had the highest turnout rate in both 2008 and 2012.
  • Although the percentage of eligible voters casting ballots dropped in 2012, compared with 2008, the rate of those deterred by illness or disability or because of problems with registration or absentee ballots also fell.
  • More states offered online voter information tools in 2012.
  • 30 states and the district required post-election audits of voting equipment performance in 2012, compared with 22 in 2008. Mandating a post-election audit allows states to ensure that voting equipment is functioning properly and delivering an accurate result.
  • The highest-performing states—those in the top 25 percent—were Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Washington, and Wisconsin.
  • The lowest performers—those in the bottom 25 percent—were Alabama, Arkansas, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, New York, Oklahoma, Texas, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia. Six of these—Alabama, California, Mississippi, New York, Oklahoma, and West Virginia—were also ranked at the bottom in 2008 and 2010, and Mississippi was the lowest performer in all three years tracked.

Research shows that states offering more convenient opportunities for voter registration had a lower rate of rejected registrations, lower use of provisional ballots, and fewer voters unable to cast ballots due to registration problems. Meanwhile states that utilized the latest technology to conduct data matching of state voter registration lists, such as the Electronic Registration Information Center, had a reduced rate of provisional ballots cast and rejected and in individuals who experienced registration problems.

A state's overall performance is calculated and averaged based on the 17 indicators that make up the index, each agreed upon by an expert advisory group led by Charles Stewart III, professor of political science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

This study draws upon quantifiable data for all 50 states and the District of Columbia from the U.S. Census Bureau's Current Population Survey Voting and Registration Supplement, the Election Assistance Commission's Election Administration and Voting Survey and its Statutory Overview, state election division records, the Survey of the Performance of American Elections, George Mason University's United States Elections Project, and Pew's reports "Being Online Is Not Enough" and "Being Online Is Still Not Enough." For the complete methodology visit www.pewstates.org/epi.

The Pew Charitable Trusts is driven by the power of knowledge to solve today's most challenging problems. Learn more at www.pewstates.org.

Stephanie Bosh, 202-540-6741, [email protected]

SOURCE The Pew Charitable Trusts

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Wooed by the promise of faster innovation, lower TCO, and greater agility, businesses of every shape and size have embraced the cloud at every layer of the IT stack – from apps to file sharing to infrastructure. The typical organization currently uses more than a dozen sanctioned cloud apps and will shift more than half of all workloads to the cloud by 2018. Such cloud investments have delivered measurable benefits. But they’ve also resulted in some unintended side-effects: complexity and risk. ...
It is ironic, but perhaps not unexpected, that many organizations who want the benefits of using an Agile approach to deliver software use a waterfall approach to adopting Agile practices: they form plans, they set milestones, and they measure progress by how many teams they have engaged. Old habits die hard, but like most waterfall software projects, most waterfall-style Agile adoption efforts fail to produce the results desired. The problem is that to get the results they want, they have to ch...
With the introduction of IoT and Smart Living in every aspect of our lives, one question has become relevant: What are the security implications? To answer this, first we have to look and explore the security models of the technologies that IoT is founded upon. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nevi Kaja, a Research Engineer at Ford Motor Company, discussed some of the security challenges of the IoT infrastructure and related how these aspects impact Smart Living. The material was delivered interac...
In 2014, Amazon announced a new form of compute called Lambda. We didn't know it at the time, but this represented a fundamental shift in what we expect from cloud computing. Now, all of the major cloud computing vendors want to take part in this disruptive technology. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Doug Vanderweide, an instructor at Linux Academy, discussed why major players like AWS, Microsoft Azure, IBM Bluemix, and Google Cloud Platform are all trying to sidestep VMs and containers wit...
The Internet giants are fully embracing AI. All the services they offer to their customers are aimed at drawing a map of the world with the data they get. The AIs from these companies are used to build disruptive approaches that cannot be used by established enterprises, which are threatened by these disruptions. However, most leaders underestimate the effect this will have on their businesses. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Rene Buest, Director Market Research & Technology Evangelism at Ara...
"We are a monitoring company. We work with Salesforce, BBC, and quite a few other big logos. We basically provide monitoring for them, structure for their cloud services and we fit into the DevOps world" explained David Gildeh, Co-founder and CEO of Outlyer, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
When growing capacity and power in the data center, the architectural trade-offs between server scale-up vs. scale-out continue to be debated. Both approaches are valid: scale-out adds multiple, smaller servers running in a distributed computing model, while scale-up adds fewer, more powerful servers that are capable of running larger workloads. It’s worth noting that there are additional, unique advantages that scale-up architectures offer. One big advantage is large memory and compute capacity...
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM has been named “Diamond Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st Cloud Expo, which will take place on October 31 through November 2nd 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, California.
A look across the tech landscape at the disruptive technologies that are increasing in prominence and speculate as to which will be most impactful for communications – namely, AI and Cloud Computing. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Curtis Peterson, VP of Operations at RingCentral, highlighted the current challenges of these transformative technologies and shared strategies for preparing your organization for these changes. This “view from the top” outlined the latest trends and developments i...
"Loom is applying artificial intelligence and machine learning into the entire log analysis process, from start to finish and at the end you will get a human touch,” explained Sabo Taylor Diab, Vice President, Marketing at Loom Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Lachapelle, CEO of the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB), provided an overview of various initiatives to certify the security of connected devices and future trends in ensuring public trust of IoT. Eric Lachapelle is the Chief Executive Officer of the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB), an international certification body. His role is to help companies and individuals to achieve professional, accredited and worldwide re...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend 21st Cloud Expo October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-14, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists examined how DevOps helps to meet the de...
Automation is enabling enterprises to design, deploy, and manage more complex, hybrid cloud environments. Yet the people who manage these environments must be trained in and understanding these environments better than ever before. A new era of analytics and cognitive computing is adding intelligence, but also more complexity, to these cloud environments. How smart is your cloud? How smart should it be? In this power panel at 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, pane...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo taking place Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 21st International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is ...