Greenwich wins Democracy Cup for highest voter turnout

Award ceremony March 30

Four Connecticut towns, including Greenwich, earned the Democracy Cup, which is awarded to municipalities that saw the highest voter turnout in the state in the 2016 presidential election. Turnout for Greenwich was 85.22%. Each community awarded the Democracy Cup will be able to host and display a trophy through the next presidential election. There will be an award ceremony for Greenwich on Thursday, March 30, at 2:30 p.m., at Town Hall, 101 Field Point Road, Meeting Room, Greenwich.

Secretary of the State Denise Merrill will present titles in four categories based on town size — small, mid-sized, large and city. The winners were Pomfret (small), Somers (mid-sized), Wallingford (large) and Greenwich (city).

Secretary Merrill said, “The citizens of these towns produced electrifying results with turnout ranging from an impressive 85 percent to a whopping 95 percent. This kind of participation is like the four-minute-mile of elections. It is in a league of its own! While towns and cities host the trophies, democracy is the real winner.”

Under Democracy Cup criteria, towns with fewer than 5,000 people are considered small; municipalities with between 5,000 and 14,999 are considered mid-sized; towns with between 15,000 and 49,999 people are considered large towns. Municipalities with more than 50,000 people are categorized as cities. The competition has been co-sponsored by the East Haddam Civic Association since 2000.

Scot Mackinnon, cofounder of the Democracy Cup and East Haddam Civic Association member said, “As is often the case with presidential election cycles, voter turnout, at all levels, is usually much better than in non-presidential years. However, 2016 was one of the best years on record.  Connecticut cities and towns expect to have their best voter turnout in locally contentious races but 2016 was an especially controversial year at the national level driving heavy voter participation across the country. Congratulations to (first time) winners Pomfret, Somers, Wallingford and Greenwich.”

In the 2016 general election, a record 1,675,955 people cast a ballot out of an all-time high 2,178,169 registered voters, amounting to just under 77% turnout. Turnout surpassed the previous record of 1,644,845 voters set in 2008.

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