Low turnout for mayoral election

Lawton_Monday's mayoral election in Lawton brought out 15% of all registered voters.  It was a little bit different the last time Lawtonians voted for mayor.

That was March 9th, 2004.

Then, more than 21% of you showed up at the polls. So, what's the reason for the drop off and why are we voting in December, anyway?

State law changed.

The legislature voted to give cities several options for new dates for elections. The city of Lawton proposed a December date, and the voters agreed in March of 2005.

Ironically, only 8% of the voters showed up for that election.

Comanche County Election Board Secretary Monica Baughman says with an election just last month, some voters could be burned out.  "December just is a bad month to be voting," Baughman said, "because people are looking into the holidays, leaving town and visiting family. It's just a bad time to have an election.

Lawton City Manager Larry Mitchell says only time will tell if this change is a good thing.  "The disadvantage may be you just had an election in November and then you have another election a month later, that might be a down side.   It will be interesting to see, I wouldn't gauge it strictly on this turnout."

The December date is an advantage for newly-elected city officials. They have more time to get familiar with how things work before they help determine the new budget and start casting votes on how to spend our tax dollars.