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New study ranks Mississippi nation’s best in voter representation

JACKSON, MISS– A recent study has ranked Mississippi as best in the nation for age representation on election day, but 46th in racial representation at the polls.

Finance website released the study “States with Best and Worst Representation on Election Day” on Wednesday. The study analyzed and ranked the states based on the representations of gender, age, race, employment status, educational attainment and marital status.

Mississippi was ranked best in the nation for age representation, a feat Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann credited to the young voter.

“We’re pleased obviously, that we have the best representation,” said Hosemann. “The fact of the matter is though, of those between the ages of 18-24 nationwide, only 38 percent show up to vote. We’ve just obviously done better than other states at reaching those voters.”

Even though a victory is celebrated at being at the top of the age representation category, the state lacked severely in racial representation, ranked at 46th nationwide. Sec. Hosemann was surprised by the rank, given recent elections.

“We had an African-American that ran as President of the United States and was elected..” said Sec. Hosemann. “And we had a strong Obama-Clinton race in that primary in 2008, then Obama ran again and was re-elected four years ago…I think we have a better turnout than these (numbers) reflect.”

Sec. Hosemann laid out a plan for attracting the minority voter.

“For the long term, and we’ve done this for the past eight or nine years I’ve been here,” said Sec. Hosemann. “We got to the schools, and we hold elections there…. We get them in the process, and excited about it.”

With this long-running program, Sec. Hosemann said students specifically between the ages of 14-18 are the ones they hope to entice about how elections work, and how their votes count once they’ve hit legal age.

The program is called “Promote the Vote” is a comprehensive K-12 voter education program, and will run through October 27th. This year’s theme, “My Voice, My Vote,” aims to highlight the importance of voting to democracy and how one ballot truly can make a difference in an election. The students will receive a mock ballot and participate in an election.

“The mock ballot this year looks very similar to the ballot Mississippi voters will actually see at the polls on Election Day,” Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann said. “The more realistic exposure to and information about the election process we can give our youth before they are eligible to vote, the more likely they are to participate in choosing their elected leaders when they become adults.”



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