Democratic campaign committees and activist groups have been spending millions of dollars to fight against a range of legal obstacles on voting, believing that making voter registration easier and keeping polls open longer would inspire more Americans to turn out. But to nonvoters themselves, those issues don’t seem to be at the forefront of their minds: Only 8 percent of nonvoters said they don’t vote because they don’t have the time to get to the polls — fourth on the list of reasons they cited. Only 5 percent of nonvoters said they don’t vote because they aren’t registered.
That was the surprising finding of a sweeping new study released Wednesday by the Knight Foundation. The study, which involved polling and interviews with over 14,000 people, showed that a plurality of nonvoters cited a dislike of the candidates (17 percent) and a feeling that their votes don’t matter (12 percent) as the main motivators for not voting. read more