AARP Release Aims To Intimidate Legislators, Guv.

A message to Idaho legislators from the old people lobby–AARP–could certainly provide an explanation why Idaho students, workers, and others under the age of 50 don’t fare well with legislative issues. It’s the oldtimers who vote and its the oldtimers who lean toward conservative values.

The kids who hit the streets demanding the vote at age 18 in the 1960s are over 50 these days and obviously actively voting, but they apparently haven’t passed along the gene to their kids.

Here is the press release text and the breakdown provided by the American Association of Retired Persons Thursday.
The winners of Idaho’s November elections are set to take their seats at the State Capitol in the coming days for the 2011 legislation session, and AARP is reminding legislators the state’s 50+ voters likely put them there. With Idaho voter data from last year’s elections newly available, today, AARP released an analysis finding 65% of all votes cast came from a voter aged 50 or older. AARP reviewed who voted in every legislative race in Idaho, and one thing is clear, the 50+ age group dominated the polls in all of them.

Out of the 408,000 Idahoans who hit the ballot box in Idaho’s November elections, AARP’s analysis found roughly 264,000 (or 65%) were 50 or older. The trend holds true for every Idaho legislative race. While 66% of all registered voters 50+ voted, fewer than 40% of registered voters under 50 did.

“50+ voters tend to have a very strong showing in mid-term elections, and the 2010 elections in Idaho were no exception,” said Jim Wordelman, State Director for AARP in Idaho. “The 50+ are a known force in Idaho elections, now; many, including AARP members, are looking for those they voted into office to act on issues that matter most to them.”

On the heels of statewide efforts, listening to members’ issues and concerns, AARP’s top priorities for the 2011 Idaho legislative session include: working with lawmakers to tackle the state budget in ways that don’t just call for more cuts to critical programs, including education, and protecting a patient’s living will or advance directive by fixing Idaho’s new “conscience” law. AARP will roll out its full 2011 Idaho legislative agenda in the coming week.

“This is a voting group that expects state lawmakers to hear their voices beyond the ballot box,” added Wordelman. “This will no doubt be a daunting legislative session, and AARP is looking forward to working with legislators to tackle these key issues.”

The AARP analysis found 50+ voters accounted for the majority of votes cast in every race in Idaho. Nearly half of all Idaho’s 50+ population are AARP members, a group that is even more likely to be registered and to vote in every federal, state and local election.

AARP voter turnout analysis: the power of the 50+ vote in Idaho
State Legislative District
% of Idaho Voters 50+ in 2010
Governor (statewide)
Legislative District 1
Legislative District 2
Legislative District 3
Legislative District 4
Legislative District 5
Legislative District 6
Legislative District 7
Legislative District 8
Legislative District 9
Legislative District 10
Legislative District 11
Legislative District 12
Legislative District 13
Legislative District 14
Legislative District 15
Legislative District 16
Legislative District 17
Legislative District 18
Legislative District 19
Legislative District 20
Legislative District 21
Legislative District 22
Legislative District 23
Legislative District 24
Legislative District 25
Legislative District 26
Legislative District 27
Legislative District 28
Legislative District 29
Legislative District 30
Legislative District 31
Legislative District 32
Legislative District 33
Legislative District 34
Legislative District 35

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. sam the sham
    Jan 6, 2011, 1:20 pm

    Although I am in this group, I am sorry for the way that the older folks in Idaho voted this year. It’s as if they do not have grandchildren in the school systems or they do not concern themselves with the education of future generations. (and this is only one topic open to discussion).
    tsk tsk tsk.

  2. This means nothing here in Idaho.

    All this says is old people vote. Big deal.
    Dist. 19 is all Dems. 58% old people.

    Dist. # BFE in Canyon County is all Repub.
    60% Old people.

    What this does say is young people don’t vote in mid-term elections.

  3. One should not be able vote unless they have good credit? Hmmmm… help me out here how about a few other limitations intended to let only responsible voters vote. Very slippery slope, but I wonder what we can come up with………..

  4. Rod in SE Boise
    Jan 6, 2011, 9:19 pm

    The press release mentioned only two issues – education and the “consience” law. Idaho voters voted overwhelmingly for ultra-conservative legislators who are determined to gut education funding and who find the “consience” law to be just fine as is.

    Why then, did all these over 50 voters vote for guys who will legislate AGAINST their wishes??? Sounds like those tea party people who say: “Don’t touch my Medicare, but take that other guy’s Medicare away from him.”

  5. This over-50 voted but few of those I voted were elected. Can’t understand why so many of all ages voted against their own best interests.

  6. Anne.. self interest can be defined narrowly (what will happen to my Social Security check or my car registration fees) or broadly (what are the long-term implications for the state or country of a particular policy). I don’t think anyone votes against their self interest.. they just view it differently. That said, older people, IMHO, tend to be incredibly selfish when it comes to public policy–looking only at short-term effects on their own pocket book. (and I am over 60).

  7. Chris Mitchell
    Jan 7, 2011, 9:32 am

    There’s no school like the old school.

  8. Do you honestly believe that the republican dominated legislature sits in their “bunker” offices and ask “how can we best gut the education system”? The most important part of the equation is that we are, by more than one forecast,$350,000,000.00 short of paying the 2010 level of spending in 2011.
    Unless you are willing to eat a 3%increase in sales tax, re-vamp the tax breaks that have been given, (good luck with the farmers), and throw out the current PERSI retirement system, then you simply need to be quiet! The next 90 days will be painful for everyone!!

  9. Interesting that farmers still get massive subsidies while farm commodity prices are so high right now. Haven’t heard this part of the industrial welfare state bitching much, unless it is an industrial CAFO trying to loophole environmental laws.

  10. The closer the Boomers get to the final exit the more things will get interesting. And as a group we will dictate outcomes in future elections. Politicians can ignore us at their peril.

    I’m on the front end of the Boomer Generation and I can honestly say I made every effort to vote in every election over the years. I’ve missed a few but they can be counted on the fingers of one hand.

    You can’t play Rip Van Winkle and hand everything over to the elected politicians without a fair amount of debate and winnowing out of undesirables and just plain bad ideas. Voting is the only tool the average person has to let his voice be heard and is a Civic responsibility I do not take lightly.

    People who don’t take the time to become informed voters take for granted all the blood, effort and treasure spent to protect our rights to vote. I view voting as a sacred right that a lot of people ignore.

  11. I am always amused when I read about someone ‘gutting’ education and then see the attack really resulted in less of a drop in the life style of the educators (where the money really goes) then I saw to my homes value over the last year…And my total property tax bill went up!

  12. I’m no fan of AARP, but I’m wondering how this news release aims to “intimidate” legislators. In all fairness, they are saying, “We are the constituents who voted for you. Pay attention to our concerns.”

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