By Brielle Conwell
With the 2018 midterm general election showing an increase in both the number of registered voters as well as the number of ballots cast, Chicago politicians and election officeials look forward to seeing if the trend will continue in the upcoming Nov. 8 midterms.
Between the Chicago General elections in 2006, 2010, and 2014, the number of registered voters as well as the number of ballots cast remained relatively consistent. There was a total of 49.25% of registered voters who cast ballots in the 2006 Chicago General Election; a total of 52.88% of registered voters who cast ballots in the 2010 Chicago General Election; and a total of 48.81% of registered voters who cast ballots in the 2018 Chicago General Election. Among all of these General Election races, there were around 1.3 million registered voters within Chicago.
An increase was seen in both the number of registered voters as well as the number of ballots cast in the 2018 Chicago General Election. In 2018, there were a total of 1,503,353 registered Chicago voters and 912,061 ballots were cast. In total, 60.67% of all registered voters cast ballots in the 2018 Chicago General Election.
The 2022 Illinois General Election is expected to bring in the most voters that have been seen in decades, with a possible projection of 4.3 million voters statewide.
Past General Elections in Illinois have included an average of 64 of 118 Statehouse districts that have been contested by a candidate from each major party. Within the upcoming 2022 Illinois General Election, there are a historic 82 contested Illinois House races on the ballots. This is the highest number of contested races in 24 years in Illinois, since 2002 when there were 80 contested races.
Voters benefit from having clear choices on the day of elections, and as the number of candidates increases, so does the participation of voters. With more options of candidates, the number of ballots cast in the 2022 General Election is expected to increase across Illinois, as well as within Chicago.