Low voter turnout numbers expected in Campbell and Kenton counties, with a possible spike in Boone

10/30/2015 11:00 AM

Traditionally, Northern Kentucky has had among the smallest percentage of voters in the state who turnout to vote during gubernatorial elections.

In the past couple of elections that turnout has been between 20 and 25 percent. A fact that leads candidates for statewide office to calculate how much time and money they should spend in the area in an effort to attract voters on Election Day.

Campbell County Clerk Jim Luersen expects around a 23 percent turnout based on absentee ballots and early voting in his county.

Luerson says that many in his county are simply not engaged in this year’s election.

“Most people I’ve talked to don’t even know that a race is going on,” Luersen said. “I remember last year when I was running for this office, and so many people would tell me, well, we only vote on the presidential elections, and I’m thinking that you have much more influence on la local level, county level, a state level than you do in voting for president.”

Kenton County Clerk Gabrielle Summe, who expects between a 20 and 25 percent turnout, believes that one of the reasons for voter apathy in her county is the fact that the area is dominated by the Cincinnati media market. The market offers less attention to Kentucky candidates, and more expensive advertising rates for spots which also reach people in Ohio, where the majority of the viewership in the market live.

“As we are considered a metro area, of course our advertising rates are more expensive than they would be somewhere else, especially TV,” Summe said.

Boone County Clerk Kenny Brown, a Bevin supporter, expects 28 percent to turnout in his county – that’s up seven percent from 2011.

Brown feels that the popularity of Matt Bevin in the pro-tea party county is a big reason for the uptick in voters going to the polls.

“This is probably ground zero for Matt Bevin,” Brown said. “His headquarters has been here for almost 18 months now, and he’s got a lot of supporters here. The ground game for Bevin hasn’t stopped since he ran for U.S. Senate.”


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