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Turn-out is the product of a complex set of factors. Various factors that could be considered to impact on participation in elections are voter knowledge, the reward from voting, the cost of voting, ease or difficulty of registering to vote, the impact of efforts to increase registration, political campaigning and the impact of the news media. Other factors include perceptions about the status of different elections and that some may perceive the General election as 'first order' and other elections second, or even third. This may be caused by the lack of awareness about the different powers of assemblies and parliaments and how they affect people's lives. Others include the range of political choices, closeness of the contest, whether people feel their vote counts, whether people feel politicians speak for them, whether they are aware of the election and if there are convenient methods of voting. For example, on convenience, we know that postal voting has been associated with a doubling of turn-out at local, European Parliamentary and Welsh Assembly elections. We have not covered research into all the potential opportunities but provide the findings of some research that is pertinent to the concerns about the drop in participation in General elections.

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