toronto election voter turnout

Toronto sees record-low voter turnout and people have thoughts

Did you vote in Monday's Toronto municipal election? There's a statistical probability that you did not, as just a fraction of the city's eligible voting base showed up to cast their ballots in what is certainly looking to be a historic low voter turnout.

Based on the figures available on Tuesday morning — full election results are expected later in the week — it looks like just 29 per cent of voters turned out on Monday, a significant drop from the 41 per cent who showed up to vote in the 2018 municipal election.

John Tory secured a third term with a landslide victory, earning another four years at City Hall. And though the margin was wide, only 551,886 votes were cast for mayoral candidates out of approximately 1.89 million eligible voters as per the city's unofficial results.

Long story short, most people just couldn't be bothered to dedicate a portion of their day to an election outcome that almost seemed predetermined based on advance polling.

But this apparent apathy towards the most basic form of municipal engagement has become the real discussion topic on social media the morning after Tory's widely-predicted reelection.

And as bad as it was in Toronto, it seems that voter apathy is a province-wide issue, as other municipalities saw worryingly low turnout on Monday.

Only 25 per cent of Brampton voters turned out to cast ballots, a statistic that has been met with disappointment on social media.

People seem perplexed that in a city as important on the global stage as Toronto, a mayoral candidate can easily secure a W with just a few hundred thousand votes.

The 2022 voter turnout is a stark contrast to the scenes of the 2014 election that saw John Tory defeat now-Premier Doug Ford, who had stepped in to run in place of Rob Ford after the latter's cancer diagnosis.

It felt like a whole lot more was on the line in 2014, but Toronto's lacklustre showing in the 2022 election came on the heels of Premier Doug Ford announcing strong mayor powers for Ontario municipalities, meaning that Tory will have new sweeping power for his third lap around City Hall.

Lead photo by

Jack Landau

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