From the Editors
The New York Times says Jadaliyya "Brings New Life to Arab Studies." Read about it by clicking here.
Based on numbers reported by Egyptian media outlets, below is a summary of the constitutional referendum vote results broken down by governorate.
What do these numbers tell us?
- In two stages of voting, average turnout across governorates was 30%, with Egyptians abroad participation being the most notable outlier with a 41% turnout rate.
- The only three governorates where the majority of voters elected to reject the draft constitution are Cairo, Gharbiyya, and Menofia.
What do these numbers not tell us?
- Given that the vast majority of eligible voters (68% or 33,855,564) did not participate in the referendum, we can neither conclude that the majority of the eligible voting population supports the constitution, nor can we conclude that a majority rejects it.
- Only 16,232,035 or 32% of eligible voters have reportedly cast a vote. It is, therefore, misleading to claim that the silence of the other 68% is reflective of support for one position or another.
What conclusions are impossible to draw from these numbers?
- The reasons behind the low turnout are many, not mutually exclusive, and unclear. Thus far, there has been no empirical evaluation of the possible links between voter abstention and lack of motivation, or the restriction that a voter can only vote in her assigned polling station—as opposed to the 19 March 2011 referendum, when Egyptians were allowed to vote wherever they pleased. It is unclear whether this restriction was enforced, and whether it was consistently respected.
- Attempting to establish relationships between governorate-level voting results and various demographic and social indicators, such as literacy rate, is misleading, because eligible voters in a given governorate may include individuals who reside in different governorates and whose demographics are not captured by governorate-level indicators. For instance, claiming that predominantly rural governorates support the constitution can be misleading if it turns out that registered voters in these supposedly rural regions include a large number of well-educated youth working in nearby urban centers.
- Commentators in social media have examined every possible correlation between [name your favorite social or demographic indicator] and governorate level voting outcomes. While drowning in interesting and seemingly revealing scatterplots and tables, it is easy to lose track of the fact that correlation is not causation. For example, given the data under consideration, the courageous inferences that commentators have been making with regards to the role of the rural/urban divide or illiteracy rates in driving voting behavior across governorates are anything but justified.
Constitutional Referendum Results Broken down by Governorate
Notes: AO: Ahram Online; EI: Egypt Independent; FJP: Freedom and Justice Party; MY: Al-Masry Al-Youm
If you prefer, email your comments to email@example.com.
Hot on Facebook
Jadalicious / جدلشس
Brecht wrote once, "In the future, they will not say the times were dark. They will ask: Why were their poets silent?" Some poets were silent this spring, but many others weren't.click | email | tweet
Latest EntriesView All Entries »
- New Texts Out Now: Maha Abdelrahman, Egypt's Long Revolution: Protest Movements and Uprisings
- Le Père Lebret, chroniqueur de l’Etat libanais en construction
- Expropriation, Lawlessness, and Resistance in Yirca's Olive Groves: An Interview with Olcay Bingol and Deniz Bayram
- لم يكن في خطتنا أن ننتصر
- Faculty Support Student-Workers of UAW 2865 in Solidarity with Palestinian Students and Workers
- Syria Media Roundup (November 25)
- Turkey Media Roundup (November 25)
- Moving in the Maze with Cairene Artist Qarm Qart
- Larissa Sansour
- Event at GMU: The Double Execution of Saddam Hussein: Diaspora, Media, and Images, with Zainab Saleh
- Last Week on Jadaliyya (November 17-23)
- A French Atlas of the Gulf States
- Egypt Media Roundup (November 24)
- O.I.L. Media Roundup (23 November)
- Arab Jewish Identity and the Art of Hospitality: A Conversation with Michael Rakowitz
- Visit Our Jadaliyya/ASI/GMU Booths at MESA! #83 and #84
- Maghreb Media Roundup (November 21)
- Give Palestinian Children a Voice
- On the Margins Roundup (November)
- Arabian Peninsula Media Roundup (November 19)