There’s a little unknown fact about Memphis City Council runoffs known as the “exhausted voter”. The exhausted voter represents the number of people who vote in the first round election in October but are too exhausted, for whatever reason, to vote in the runoff election the following November.
The rate at which exhausted voters fail to turnout for the November election is known as the ” turnout drop-off rate”. We took a look at five runoff elections for City Council districts 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7 during the 2015 election cycle and analyzed the drop-off rate for each election and visualized the data using a column graph to demonstrate the stark contrast between voters who participate in October but are unable, or unwilling, to attend the November runoff election.
Voters elect their City Council representatives in November. A voter will likely not show up for the November runoff because they are likely to be figuratively, or literally, exhausted from taking off work, finding reliable childcare, finding a polling station, finding transportation to and from the ballot box or any other barrier that they must overcome during the election. Asking people to this once is okay. But asking people to overcome multiple barriers multiple times, is a point of privilege. And it is exhausting for everyone.
Under Instant Runoff Voting, nearly every voter and vote will count towards electing City Council representatives without creating an exhausted voting population.
There is something known as “exhausted ballots”, and this happens under instant runoff voting when all three choices are eliminated. It doesn’t happen very often but sometimes it does but at a significantly lower rate than exhausted voters.
Vote “No” in November on all referendum to save and implement instant runoff voting. RSVP here on facebook and share with your friends.