Records show highest voter turnout in generations - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Records show highest voter turnout in generations

AP photo courtesy The Detroit News AP photo courtesy The Detroit News

America voted in record numbers, standing in lines that snaked around blocks and in some places in pouring rain. Voters who lined-up on Tuesday and the millions who balloted early propelled 2008 to what one expert said was the highest turnout in a century.

It looks like 136.6 million Americans will have voted for president this election, based on 88 percent of the country's precincts tallied and projections for absentee ballots, said Michael McDonald of George Mason University. Using his methods, that would give 2008 a 64.1 percent turnout rate.

"That would be the highest turnout rate that we've seen since 1908," which was 65.7 percent, McDonald said early Wednesday. It also would beat the old post World War II high of 63.8 percent in the famed 1960 John F. Kennedy-Richard Nixon squeaker. The 1908 race elected William Howard Taft over William Jennings Bryan.

The total voting in 2008 easily outdistanced 2004's 122.3 million, which had been the highest grand total of voters before.

Source: The Associated Press

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