Revisiting Provisional Ballots in Philadelphia, PA

Following the November election, we featured the significant increase in the use of provisional ballots in Philadelphia as compared with 2008. Preliminary analysis by city officials has shed some light on what happened: 

  • 27,355 voters cast provisional ballots; 19,670 provisional votes, or 72 percent, were ruled valid;
  • 4,240 invalid provisional ballots were cast by people not registered to vote in Pennsylvania or not registered at all;
  • 1,630 invalid provisional ballots were from individuals who had been removed from registration lists, raising questions about the purge processes in Philadelphia;
  • Of the 19,670 valid provisional ballots, 5,263 were not in the poll books or on supplemental lists printed after the poll book deadline;
  • 14,407 — more than half of all provisional ballots issued — were cast by voters who were listed in poll books or supplemental lists, but either they went to the wrong polling place or poll workers couldn’t find their names.

Spotlight on Mental Health

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Learn the Basics of Broadband from Our Limited Series

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How does broadband internet reach our homes, phones, and tablets? What kind of infrastructure connects us all together? What are the major barriers to broadband access for American communities?

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What Is Antibiotic Resistance—and How Can We Fight It?

Sign up for our four-week email series The Race Against Resistance.

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Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also known as “superbugs,” are a major threat to modern medicine. But how does resistance work, and what can we do to slow the spread? Read personal stories, expert accounts, and more for the answers to those questions in our four-week email series: Slowing Superbugs.

Explore Pew’s new and improved
Fiscal 50 interactive

Your state's stats are more accessible than ever with our new and improved Fiscal 50 interactive:

  • Maps, trends, and customizable charts
  • 50-state rankings
  • Analysis of what it all means
  • Shareable graphics and downloadable data
  • Proven fiscal policy strategies


Welcome to the new Fiscal 50

Key changes include:

  • State pages that help you keep track of trends in your home state and provide national and regional context.
  • Interactive indicator pages with highly customizable and shareable data visualizations.
  • A Budget Threads feature that offers Pew’s read on the latest state fiscal news.

Learn more about the new and improved Fiscal 50.