GUSA election, with 3,152 votes cast, may have set new turnout record

Sam Ungar (COL ’12), the Georgetown University Student Association parliamentarian, said in an e-mail that today’s election may have had the highest turnout of any GUSA election to date:

“Assuming an undergraduate population near 7,092 (the 2008-09 enrollment, which is the last publicly available figure on the University’s website),” he writes, “we had a turnout of approximately 44 percent in this election. It is believed that this is a new record turnout for a GUSA Presidential election, beating the previous record by some 500 votes—I will be working to confirm this over the next few days.”

Below is a graph Ungar compiled with data from the Election Commission, which is expected to release the results of the election at 11 p.m. tomorrow. So far, says Election Commissioner, there have been no major problems with voting.

Since the numbers are a little hard to read, here’s a quick breakdown (Speaker Adam Talbot tells Vox that you have to guesstimate times):

  • 1,500 around 10:30 p.m. last night … 2,070 votes around 2 a.m. this morning
  • 2,390 … 2,445 … 2,538 … 2,715 … 2,775 … 2,962 … 2,995 … 3,010 … 3,099 … 3,111 … 3,152!

17 Comments on “GUSA election, with 3,152 votes cast, may have set new turnout record

  1. Would anyone who’s been around a while like to compare this election, the first run by GUSA, to how they used to be handled under the reign of the Senior Class Committee / old Election Commission? Not to jinx this but this may be a clean and all around successful election.

    From my outside perspective it seems to validate GUSA’s decision to bring the election management in-house.

  2. 2010, ?: 3,152
    2009, Calen & Jason (last year): 2,609
    2008, Dowd: 2,548
    2007, Ben & Matt: 1,973
    2006, Twister: 2,270
    2005, Pravin: 2,271
    2004, Kelly & Luis: 2,293
    2003, Morgenstern and DeMan: 2,756
    2002, Bridges: 2,766
    2001, DuBose: 2,270 (the first fully online election)
    2000, Davis: 1,850
    1999, Palmese: 2,092

  3. Thanks to all the candidates for participating in this vigorous process!

  4. If you want to know the exact times from the data points:

    Timestamp Votes In
    2/22/10 8:09 PM 0
    2/22/10 10:42 PM 1500
    2/23/10 1:30 AM 2070
    2/23/10 11:21 AM 2390
    2/23/10 12:12 PM 2445
    2/23/10 2:45 PM 2583
    2/23/10 5:13 PM 2715
    2/23/10 6:30 PM 2775
    2/23/10 9:39 PM 2962
    2/23/10 10:10 PM 2995
    2/23/10 10:27 PM 3010
    2/23/10 11:02 PM 3063
    2/23/10 11:28 PM 3099
    2/23/10 11:41 PM 3111
    2/24/10 12:00 AM 3152

  5. GUSA was established in 1984. From 1969-83 there was just the “Student Government”. And from 1894-1968, the Yard.

    And just for shits, I gave a look at the earlier turnouts on the Hoya archives (it only goes through 1980).

    1980, Goldwyn & Dixon: 1608
    1979, Ozmun & Hughes: 1443
    1978, Cleary & Torsney 1798
    1977, Canty: 2535 (first female president)

    1969, Clark: 2,180

  6. One of the greatest things about my job is that whenever there arises a question that seems as though it will be really, really tough to answer, Matt Stoller will provide the correct response with remarkable alacrity.

    On this issue, I will yield to his response, and re-iterate that this is the highest turnout for a GUSA Presidential election ever, beating the previous record-holder (the 2002 vote) by 386 votes.

  7. Not to disparage the turnout, but the idea that this is the highest turnout ever, while not meaningless, strikes me as secondary to the percentage of the student body that voted. Like ranking the highest-grossing films of all-time without adjusting for inflation, I think it doesn’t really give an accurate picture of turnout.

    The historical turnouts are interesting, but I’d be more interested in seeing percentage turnouts in past years before proclaiming this year the best year ever. (And though I don’t know historical enrollment levels, judging by Matt’s figures, I’m guessing that 1977 was a much better year than this one and that overall 44% might not be too impressive compared with the late 70’s.)

  8. Ahh yes… the Voice had to find some way to criticize GUSA. Turnout percentages it weak, though.

  9. @Sam:

    1977 turnout of 2,535 represented 52% of the population, which seems to be the highest. Second highest was 45% in 1972. Prior to that was the Yard, which was College-only (how Slytherin of them), so turnout figures aren’t representative.

  10. The Voice is like the cold, emotionless, and disapproving father to GUSA. Nothing is ever good enough. WHY WON’T YOU LOVE ME DADDY?

  11. For someone supposedly in Harvard Law School you have a lot of time on your hands, Matt. My question is, can we take this GUSA election turnout as a sign of increasing legitimacy? Or is it just a more concerted effort to get a better resume?

  12. As someone involved w/ SCC under the old system, it’s great GUSA took it back. SCC had no business trying to make heads or tails of that ridiculous organization’s processes. If they can run legitimate elections, then go nuts kids. Leave the seniors—who are trying to plan things like Senior Week—out of it.

  13. Pingback: Vox Populi » GUSA straw poll results: Students love Feiman-Sims

  14. Pingback: Vox Populi » Princeton Review justifies its existence, ranks colleges

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