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NC Seniors Expected to be Major Part of Midterm Election

September 30, 2010

RALEIGH, N.C. - The senior vote is a hot commodity in this year's midterm elections. Historically, seniors have a high voter turnout, and that is expected to continue, since 79 percent of seniors are registered to vote. Census numbers show that most of them end up casting their ballot.

Their determination to vote could prove extra important this year, with so many tightly contested races, according to Bill Wilson, associate director for advocacy with AARP North Carolina. He says candidates are focusing a lot of attention on the senior vote.

"Candidates appreciate that older adults are some of the best voters in terms of turning out at every election. I think they pay particular attention to the issues that seniors care about."

AARP just released a non-partisan voting guide that includes position statements from local and national candidates.

Many issues important to seniors are relevant to all voters, Wilson explains.

"It's about jobs, the economy and campaign finance reform. A lot of seniors are having difficulty paying property taxes, so that's another issue we certainly care about."

In the 2006 midterms, almost 30 percent of the voters were over 60.

The voter guide is available at www.aarp.org.

Stephanie Carroll Carson, Public News Service - NC