Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Anchorage Registered Voters Exceed the Number of Residents 18 or Over

[UPDATE Aug 2010:  I've done a similar post after the Aug 2010 primary election looking at the large number of registered voters compared to voting age population.]

187,163 = The number of Anchorage registered voters as of March 3, 2008.*

42,749 = Highest number of people voting Tuesday on anything (Prop 2)

184,412 Anchorage residents 18 years and over
(2000 Census Data)

So, if we believe the Division of Elections data on the number of registered voters, then about 22% of the registered voters voted on Tuesday.

But there are 187,163 registered voters (and I'm not counting those in District 16 who are in Anchorage.) But the census bureau said there were only 184,412 people in Anchorage aged 18 or over, thus eligible to vote.

OK, that's 2000 census data compared to 2008 election data. But still we have over 100% of the eligible voters registered to vote. If we had 80% of the eligible population registered to vote, that would be a high percentage.

A 2005 US Census report on the 2004 election says that in 72% of the US population said they voted - and I'd guess that people would report higher than the real numbers. If we assume Anchorage got another 10,000 people over 18 since 2000, 80% would be 157,730 registered voters.

That means the State of Alaska Division of Elections has 30,000 more people listed as registered voters in Anchorage than there should be if 80% of the over 18 population were registered. That's almost 20% more than we should have if 80% were registered.

I'm sure it's not easy to keep the voting records up-to-date. I'm sure a lot of people on the rolls have moved away or died. But if my numbers here are even reasonably close, it would seem that the Division of Elections has some serious housecleaning to do.

But if Sean Parnell, the Lt. Governor who is in charge of elections, is out campaigning for Don Young's seat, I'd guess the division won't get a lot done on this issue.

Since the number of registered voters rolls apparently includes a lot of people who have moved or died, then the percent of people who voted is actually considerably higher than 22%.

*from adding up the totals in State Division of Elections Website from Districts 17-32 which appear to be all the Anchorage districts. Probably we should add in parts of District 16, but this is close enough.


  1. Just for the record-- I cannot stand Sean. It's personal.

    However, Sean has a group working for him with the division of elections. Sean doesn't need to show up for work and people can get things done. I think it's a good point to find out how many people have moved away or died-- why not write to him and ask?

  2. See page A-2 Anchorage Daily News, 4/5/08!
    Thanks for crunching the numbers, oh ever-thinking Steve.

  3. Anon, it's hard to get a hard copy of the ADN here in Chiang Mai. Can you give me a link? Or even a title and reporter? I've been trolling the ADN website but don't think I've found the article you're referring to.

  4. Just a thought, though all this should be carefully looked into, lets consider the military. Anchorage has two fairly large bases, Elmendorf AFB and Fort Richardson. There is a large number of military who will become residents of Alaska and continue to be such after they leave the state due to a military move. Many on Active duty as well as thier dependants would continue to register and vote in the state of Alaksa bu may or may not be counted on the census.

    Again-- just a thought.


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