Backstory: US voting by the numbers

A statistical look at Tuesday's election on its eve.

Will electoral drama be enough? Control of Congress could switch hands, and contentious issues like gay marriage and abortion are on ballots in Tuesday's midterm elections. But if history is any gauge, cliffhangers won't move record numbers of midterm voters to go to the polls. Here's a by-the-numbers glimpse at US voting – who does it, and who cares?

Top ballot issues

Voters will decide on a number of controversial ballot initiatives in Tuesday's elections. Limits on eminent domain are proposed in 13 states; gay marriage faces up or down votes in eight; smoking and minimum wage questions are on the ballot in six; and abortion restrictions will be decided in three. While Americans claim to stake great importance in these issues, not many are even aware that they're up for vote.

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