Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Fact-Checking KSL's Davis County Election Story

KSL did a story on the final election results in Davis County.  You can read the story here, if you want to.  But, there is a major issue with something stated in the story.  Oh, and Davis County gets excited about low numbers.

First, the excitement:

Davis County officials say mail-in ballots brought in more voters than expected in an off-year election and cranked up voter engagement to exciting levels.

"We think that the voters this election were more informed and more engaged than they have ever been in any other election," Brian McKenzie, Davis County election manager, said Tuesday.

"Cranked up to exciting levels!"  I hope it's all the way up to 11!

The nearly 48 percent voter turnout fell below that in the last off-year election, but McKenzie still calls it a success.

How exciting!  Less than half of the people registered to vote in Davis County turned out!  They cranked it up to 5!

But, here comes the part that needs fact checking:

Final results also revealed that 77 percent of Davis County voters cast a straight Republican Party ticket

That would mean that of the nearly 65,000 people who showed up to vote, 50,000 of them voted straight party.

Why, then, do the official numbers from Davis County show the number to be significantly less?  Like, say 17,984?

Because KSL doesn't know how to read the results.  See, 77% of the Davis County voters who chose to vote straight party voted Republican.  It was actually 27.5%.

Real news outlets would have people who understand these things report on election results.

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