Pin It

Trail Mix 

Why voters are tuning out the Republican primary. Plus, get yer political merch.

click to enlarge art17503.jpg

So, What Else is On?

Something odd has happened to the GOP primary season — people are tuning out. Although both Iowa and New Hampshire’s turnouts were up a bit from 2008, and South Carolina’s was way up, everything since has been kind of tepid.

Florida was down 14 percent from 2008, and in Minnesota last week, only 47,800 turned out to vote — 25 percent less than in 2008, and 95 percent less than voted in the last statewide election. More people attended the Super Bowl than voted in Minnesota. Same story in Colorado and Nevada — down and down. Why?

Theory One: Super PAC blowback. Perhaps people are turned off by the endless negative ads kneecapping fellow Republicans. If you’re disgusted by the spectacle, you may just refuse to vote.

Theory Two: Caucuses are lame. The caucuses have shown the greatest fall-off. Maybe it’s a system whose time has passed. “Their flaws have become dominant,” Larry Sabato, the University of Virginia political scientist, told the New York Daily News. “Turnouts are low and skewed to ideologues.” And in Iowa, they couldn’t even get their caucus night count right.

Theory Three: People are bored. This is bad news for Mitt Romney, who is dogged by worries that his candidacy will never catch fire. In America, it’s all about ratings, and right now more and more people are finding something else to watch.

The Knickknack Vote

If you were an early adopter of Barack Obama in 2008, you might have purchased a limited-edition print from his website that’s worth 10 times what you paid. So if you want a keepsake, or just want to show your true colors, do what the Founding Fathers would have wanted: Go shopping!

At, you’ll find buttons, T-shirts, mugs. He does go out on a limb with a $50 hoodie — yeah, Mitt’s down with hoodies! But clocking in at 27 items, he’s clearly losing the apparel race.

At, you’ll find nine screens full of be-logoed gear — 138 in all, from a barbecue apron (“fired up and ready to grill”) to a doggie sweater to a six-pack cooler to help connect with America’s regular Joes. But the best bet for future eBay glory has to be the Obama 44 basketball jersey for $95.

And yes, we did check and we’re sorry to report that there are no sweater vests on offer — yet — over at

  • Pin It

Speaking of...

Latest in Comment

  • Undermining Our Mayors
  • Undermining Our Mayors

    Publisher's Note
    • Oct 8, 2015
  • Swap Holidays
  • Swap Holidays

    Celebrating Indigenous People's Day instead of Columbus Day would be a great start to better race relations in Spokane
    • Oct 8, 2015
  • A Speaker's Calling
  • A Speaker's Calling

    It's no coincidence John Boehner announced his resignation just after pope's visit
    • Oct 8, 2015
  • More »


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu
SpoYo Spokane Youth Book Festival

SpoYo Spokane Youth Book Festival @ Bing Crosby Theater

Sat., Oct. 10, 7 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Ted S. McGregor Jr.

Most Commented On

  • Fall Out Boys

    Mayor David Condon and Chief Frank Straub have parted ways. What that means for the SPD and next month's mayoral election
    • Oct 1, 2015
  • The Price of Freedom

    Poor people — some innocent — will languish behind bars before they're convicted. Time inside can cost them jobs, homes and children
    • Sep 9, 2015
  • More »

© 2015 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation