A lot of attention is being paid to next week’s election, but turnout isn’t expected to be any higher because of it.
The Wisconsin Government Accountability Board is predicting voter turnout of approximately 20 percent for the Spring Election on Tuesday.
“We know, historically, what people tend to do for spring elections or not do,” says GAB Spokesman Reid Magney. “And at the high end of things about 21 percent will come out; at the low end it could be as low as 11 percent or 13 percent. Our prediction is at the high end of the range.”
The most prominent statewide race on the ballot is for Supreme Court Justice. JoAnne Kloppenburg challenges incumbent Justice David Prosser for the ten-year position on the bench.
Facebook was highlighted in this race, but Magney says its impact on turnout can’t be determined. “It’s hard to say,” says Magney, “Social media has been powerful in terms of getting people energized … but whether or not that will translate into getting people to the polling place, we don’t know.”
Voters will select circuit court judges as well as local school board officials.
Also, primary elections will be held in two Assembly districts prior to the May 3rd Special Election to fill three seats vacated after GOP lawmakers left their positions to serve in the Walker Administration, including Mike Huebsch (R-West Salem-94th) as Department of Administration secretary, Mark Gottlieb (R-Port Washington-60th) as Department of Transportation secretary, and Scott Gunderson (R-Waterford-83rd) as Department of Natural Resources executive assistant.
Polls are open next Tuesday, one week from today, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Voters can find sample ballots, locate their polling places and check their voter registration status online at the Voter Public Access website.