Pedro Manuel Mamede Passos Coelho

Not even voters care as Portugal's ballot offers few choices

LISBON, Portugal _ Portugal is set to register one of the lowest election turnouts since the transition to democracy in 1974, with voters turned off by the lack of choice or abandoning the country to try their luck elsewhere. More than 40 percent of the 9.6 million eligible voters may sit out the Oct. 4 ballot, said Antonio Costa Pinto, a political science professor at the University of Lisbon. The numbers opting to stay at home may even surpass the record 41.9 percent in 2011, the year Portugal requested a bailout. With apathy gripping so many voters, the result may prove a hollow victory for European officials seeking vindication for their austerity policies after being demonized in...