As Kansas moves towards the August 3rd primary election there’s a great deal of interest, at least among a certain segment of the population, in the outcome of the election.
I say a segment, because history shows that few people vote in primary elections. A relatively small number of voters has a large say in who represents the parties in the November general election.
In the 2008 primary election in Sedgwick County, 36,724 out of 241,052 registered voters cast ballots. That’s 15.2 percent.
In the 2006 primary, 37,617 out of 229,942 registered voters, or 16.4 percent, voted.
My analysis of the Sedgwick County voter file shows that 20.4 percent of voters might be considered likely primary voters, meaning, in this case, that they voted in one or both of the most recent August primary elections. The figure for Democrats was 21.4 percent, and 32.4 percent for Republicans.
The Libertarian and Reform parties do not hold primary elections, and unaffiliated voters generally don’t vote in primaries. Only 2.6 percent unaffiliated voters voted in one or both of the most recent August primaries. That’s why the percent of all voters that are likely primary voters is lower than both the Democrat and Republican figures.