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In terms of propensity to vote, in November 2006, of those surveyed in the APE, 55 percent said they would be absolutely certain to vote in an immediate General election, whereas 11 percent would be absolutely certain not to vote. This was higher than responses in 2003 at 51 percent, and in 2005 it was 52 percent though 61 percent actually turned-out in the General election. As expected, the Audit finds that the propensity to vote increases by age and belief in a duty to vote. For example, 92 percent of those certain to vote also agreed that it is their duty to vote. However, while people who have no formal qualifications claim to be significantly less interested in and knowledgeable about politics, they have the same propensity to vote as those with A-levels or above (58 percent and 57 percent respectively). Another aspect is the propensity to vote by deprivation, where the audit finds that the very affluent and those living in rural areas have the highest propensity to vote but the propensity to vote is the same for those in 'deprived' areas and those in 'middle to affluent' areas. The 'very deprived' have the lowest propensity to vote. Overall the APE finds that across 16 indicators, there is no evidence of a decline in political engagement but that engagement levels are holding steady, although this analysis is limited in that the survey only began in 2003 after the decline of voter participation in 2001.

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