"We can't allow things that are inaccurate to stand." — The Word of Our Dan, February 19, 2008.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Torngat turnout

With a nod to Nain Bay for highlighing this interesting fact, the district of Torngat Mountains had its largest-ever absolute vote turnout on Tuesday. In fact, it has set new high-water marks for total vote in each of the past three elections:

         Total      % turnout
1979 848 ?
1982 1139 ?
1985 1151 81.7%
1989 1327 90.4%
1993 1218 83.0%
1996 1134 84.6%
1999 1223 80.2%
2003 1368 67.6%
2007 1480 71.2%
2011 1516 71.2%* (unofficial)
While highest in absolute numbers, it wasn't the highest in relative turnout as expressed as a share of eligible electors. Still, Torngat Mountains has a long history of consistently high turnout. In eight provincial elections since 1985 inclusive, Torngat Mountains has had higher-than-provincial-average turnout in all but two of them, and was only off by 0.6% in 1993. Remarkably, in four of the past five elections, turnout in Torngat has been 10% or more above the provincial average.

The provincial electoral history of this district, which consists of six isolated, mostly Inuit and Innu communities along the North Coast of Labrador, defies the stereotype (and, sadly, too often the reality) of low participation in the electoral process by Aboriginal people.

Not only is turnout in Torngat quite healthy, so is participation by Aboriginal people as candidates. Since 1993, Torngat Mountains has been consistently represented by a native-born Aboriginal person (William Andersen III, Wally Andersen, Patty Pottle, now Randy Edmunds.) This was the first election in which all major party candidates were Labrador Inuit. There has been at least one Innu candidate in the district, Simeon Tshakapesh in 1999. Inuit candidates also presented themselves under the Labrador Party banner in 2003 and 2007.

If anyone has the total vote-list figures for 1979 (when the district was first created) and 1982, which would allow for the completion of this table, pass'em on.



At 4:26 PM, October 13, 2011 , Blogger Brian said...

Well done me oh cobber.

At 5:58 PM, October 13, 2011 , Blogger Dave Adey said...

There was another Labrador Inuit who ran in the election on the son ran in district of Bay of Islands for NDP.

At 7:22 PM, October 13, 2011 , Blogger WJM said...

Oh yeah, right Dave! They're taking over! :)


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