Municipal Voter Apathy

Toronto went to the polls yesterday and re-elected John Tory to a second term. I haven't written a word about yesterday's municipal election for two reasons:

  1. I've been very busy
  2. The results were a foregone conclusion

Less than half of eligible voters in Toronto cast a vote in this election. I personally never miss an opportunity to vote, and cast my vote between donating blood and picking up the two little ones at kindergarten and daycare, but the majority took a pass. This is nothing new. Municipal elections are always plagued by voter apathy.

John Tory is a bland, safe choice who was always going to run away with this election. I didn't vote for him, but I knew he'd win easy. In my Ward 3, the incumbent councillor also won easily, and I didn't vote for him either. As the only incumbent running, not even his shady developer dealings could cost him another term. Wash, rinse, repeat.

No judgement here... I'm not going to puff out my chest and wave my finger at non-voters in holier-than-thou fashion. I actually get it. I understand the apathy. With so many incumbents winning, it does feel as if the game is rigged. And if you do not play, you cannot lose.

But as long as I'm physically able, I'll vote. And I'm doing my best to pass on these values to my kids. Next time we vote for Mayor, two of my kids will be registered voters. We'll see how influential I was.


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Comments (14 - click here to join in!)

Aidan

I voted yesterday despite having the flu and pneumonia. I've voted in every municipal, provincial, and federal election since I turned 18 and I wasn't going to let any illness hold me back. However, as has been said ad nauseum this wasn't really a 'change' election. There didn't appear to be a big issue to drive people to the polls. Usually I vote at advanced polls because of the passion I tend to feel during elections, but I didn't have much passion for this one. Nonetheless I'm proud to have done my civic duty.

ICYMI former CTV Toronto Sports Director Lance Brown was elected Councillor for the Township of Scugog.

October 23, 2018 @ 6:34 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Aidan

Last time, I was motivated to keep Doug Ford from winning.

The time before, I wanted to keep Rob Ford from winning.

October 23, 2018 @ 7:17 PM

Urooj Islam

Online voting was just too simple and convenient, I couldn't not vote even if I really wanted to because of the lack of any real races or intriguing candidates across the board.

October 23, 2018 @ 10:30 PM

jj

I voted for my incumbent on the strength of his recommendation from the Star. Did not vote for Tory however. This shit is depressing.

October 24, 2018 @ 8:06 AM

Cambo

The turnout was pretty typical of municipal elections across the province- you rarely get more than 50% out to vote.

The apathy comes from people really not caring anymore- myself included. I vote in the Provincial and Federal elections, but municipal politics is something I really don't care about. Nothing really changes, and my costs go up regardless. Most of them will just sit on council, vote about nonsense, pretend they're doing something and go home.

October 24, 2018 @ 8:09 AM

bsmntdwllr73

Completely off topic as is often my deal, but I vote 100 percent for Corrosion of Conformity's
bomb 1991 track "Vote With A Bullet." Released nearly a year before Rage Against The
Machine picked up that particular gauntlet. People who continually don't exercise their
right to vote (with all reasonable explanations obviously excepted!) would best be
served to keep their opinions in check online and in person!!! Even municipal elections
count, people!!!

October 24, 2018 @ 10:12 AM

JJ

Cambo - You could easily apply your apathy to municipal voting to the federal and provincial levels (I am glad you don't though!) I always vote, because not voting means I didn't have my say - and things are always changing on every level. Toronto needs change just as anywhere else does, otherwise the next time Faith G may get even more votes:/ :/ :/

October 24, 2018 @ 10:38 AM

Rick

Patrick Brown. Wow. Did not expect that.

And third place in the Toronto Mayor election for that? Shocking and sad. I guess she got the media attention she wanted and the Toronto Sun seemed to love her, so there was name recognition. But seriously - WTH!

London Ontario - ranked ballots. Quite interesting.

Giorgio - good riddance. I suspect you'll show up again soon enough.

Sad to see Joe Mihevc lose.

October 24, 2018 @ 12:06 PM

Anonymous

My city consulter is always from the NDP so there is no point in voting.

October 24, 2018 @ 9:18 PM

Rick C in Oakville

Not much changed out here in Oakville. A lot of the incumbents were re-elected. Just like Aidan, I haven't missed any elections also, sadly I can't say the same for my kids and wife.
I get the eye roll when I want to talk politics.
They don't enjoy my speech telling them many people would love our freedom to vote, and sometimes die for the cause. Oh well back to the Kardashians.

October 24, 2018 @ 9:29 PM

James Edgar

I Moved to Vaughn recently and didn't have the time or energy to get a handle on the issues so i didn't vote in this election. I would have had i been in the city. I'm shocked that grimes won in Etobicoke lakeshore . Ok Maybe not shocked but certainly surprised and disappointed. He certainly appears to be a least a little corrupt and definitely is an absentee councilor.

Very happy that Mammalia is gone,but expect him to pop up again those kind of vermin always do.

As for FG getting third ? I guess that shows we have a lot of either stupid or deplorable's amongst us.

October 25, 2018 @ 8:51 AM

Tron

@TorontoMike "Last time, I was motivated to keep Doug Ford from winning.
The time before, I wanted to keep Rob Ford from winning"

That's the big problem now, the voting system is more about who to keep out and not who you want in. I still think the quality of candidates goes up if we have ranked ballots

Some thoughts

-Mayor: No surprise, Tory name is just too big even though I did vote for Keesmaat. Unfortunately I would have predicted the Nazi finishing third just out of name recognition

I always wonder how does it feel to lose to Mikey Ford( W1), even though Crisanti kind of sucks, but still wowzy . More nepotsm with Holyday winning (W2) and I feel bad for TorontoMike because I find Grimes to be one of the worst in (W3)

Sad to see Maria Augimeri (W6) and Mary Fragedakis (W14) leave. I really like Josh Matlow (W12) but a bit surprised he defeated Mihevc. (W22) was the battle of ridicoulous candidates with Karygiannis besting Norm Kelly, Kelly way more likeable so not a great result

The match of the night was at (W7) Finally we don't have to hear Mammoliti at city hall anymore and I kinda like Anthony Perruzza in a goofy kind of way. So great result. But as we learn this probably means Mammo will become PM in 5 years or something stupid like that. I will bet Doug will give him a cushy gig until then

October 25, 2018 @ 2:15 PM

Yorkster

People who don't vote don't get the right to complain about the results.

John Tory is so dull, he makes beige look exciting.

October 25, 2018 @ 6:10 PM

Pete

The city needs someone who will actually do something about the major transit problem it has. Both on the roads and below ground. The city is near paralyzed when it comes to getting people to and from work, and keeps getting worse.

Would be nice if someone also had the guts to reverse the majority of the bike lanes that are taking up the city, which is further contributing to the congestion problem.

October 26, 2018 @ 10:31 AM

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