Suburban Cook County voters turned out in higher numbers in April in municipalities where races for mayor and village president appeared on the ballot, according to a review of election data by Cook County Clerk David Orr’s office.
Turnout was 27.3 percent in the 109 suburbs that held elections April 5 for mayor and village president. In the 17 municipalities with no races for mayor or president, 21.2 percent of registered voters cast ballots.
The Clerk’s office completed an analysis of its municipal turnout figures by conducting a detailed review of the voting records of the estimated 372,000 residents who cast ballots for the April 5 Consolidated Election.
Overall, voter turnout in suburban Cook County was about the same this year compared to the consolidated election of 2001 — 27 percent compared to 28 percent four years ago — but more voters cast ballots in areas that featured hotly contested or high profile races.
"It’s important to look closer at the numbers to see that voter participation was well over that 27 percent figure in a majority of suburbs," Orr said. "Turnout topped 40 percent in 28 towns, which tells us that it’s best not to focus too much on the countywide figure when we’re dealing with local elections because it can create misconceptions about how motivated people are to vote in their communities."
The suburb with the highest number of registered voters casting ballots in April was near-southwest suburban Bedford Park, at 74.2 percent, while the lowest turnout was 4.9 percent in northwest suburban Streamwood.