Voter turnout in 2019 federal election up from 2015, except among young people
A voter walks in a polling station as the advance vote is opened, Friday, October 11, 2019 in St-Georges Que. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot
OTTAWA -- Newly released Elections Canada data shows that overall voter turnout in the 2019 federal election was up from 2015, though participation was down among young people.
While initially it looked as if the number of Canadians that turned up at the polls would be less than in 2015, there was a 0.9 per cent increase in turnout, with 67 per cent of Canadians voting, up from 66.1 per cent.
The new data released on Thursday breaks down the total voter turnout by sex and age, across each province and territory. To come to this conclusion Election Canada looked at the number of eligible electors rather than registered electors, which are used for the official voting results.
While turnout overall was up, participation among voters aged 18 to 24 was down 3.2 per cent, to 53.9 per cent from the record 57.1 per cent voter turnout in 2015.
The highest increase in turnout was among voters between the ages of 35 and 44, up 2.7 per cent to 64.4 per cent from 61.5 per cent in 2015. Voters aged 65 to 74 overall had the highest participation rate, with 79.1 per cent casting a ballot in 2019, up from 78.8 per cent in 2015.
The Oct. 21, 2019 election saw the Liberal government under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reduced from a majority to a minority after a 40-day campaign, with the Conservatives and Bloc Quebecois gaining seats.
As of election night and in other initial reports since, Elections Canada had estimated that turnout would be down slightly. The slight uptick in participation rates was found by measuring against eligible voters.
“Because registration rates vary over time, it can be misleading to compare turnout using the number of registered electors from two different elections,” writes Elections Canada in the report. “Comparisons over time then reflect only changes in participation, regardless of any variations in the registration rates.”
As has already been reported, a record 4.7 million Canadians cast their ballots at advance polls, and turnout was also up at early on-campus polls.
There was also an increase in the number of candidates, registered third parties, and the overall price tag.