Beauséjour had the highest voter turnout in last week’s advanced polls: 15,664 voters in the Beauséjour riding cast ballots for this year’s federal election, according to Elections Canada. Global News calculated that this was nearly 25 per cent of the Beauséjour riding’s total voting population.
The Beauséjour riding includes Sackville, Miramichi, Shediac, Moncton-Dieppe-Riverview and other surrounding areas.
Third-year Mount Allison student Willa McCaffrey-Noviss voted at the advanced polling location over Thanksgiving weekend. She said that voting was very easy in Sackville. “There was a little bit of a lineup because [Elections Canada] were doing only two voters at a time but because it’s Sackville it still didn’t take too long,” she said.
Since advanced polling took place on Thanksgiving weekend, many students were able to vote in their home ridings. “Almost everyone I know has voted already,” said McCaffrey-Noviss.
Tierra Stokes, the Mount Allison Students’ Union’s Get out the Vote campaign co-ordinator, said, “I think it’s been a very present conversation on campus,” with regard to student engagement in this year’s federal election.
“I think having the MASU and the Get out the Vote campaign, not only here but across Canada, we are able to help people through the election process,” Stokes said. This also allows Stokes and other Get out the Vote volunteers around the country to answer questions and encourage students to do their research. As of Sunday Oct. 18, the day before the election, nearly 700 Mt. A students had pledged to vote.
The impressive number of advanced voters in the Beauséjour riding is also reflected Canada-wide. Voter turnout for this election was 73 per cent higher compared to the last federal election. Roughly 3.6 million Canadians showed up to vote at advanced polling stations. This is partially due to the fact that this year there were four days where advanced polling stations were open as opposed to three days in the 2011 election.