What's the rationale here? Nobody can really DO anything about votes anyway, so why limit the ability to see how the sum is reached? In a few SE sites, such as this one, I'm rather low rep and can't see whether something's been voted up 5 times, or 6 times and a -1, etc... I've found it frustrating and am having trouble thinking of why it would be limited to begin with.
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Seems like similar to - Show Total Votes (or Up/Down Votes)
Taken from that link - As quoted by Jeff Atwood -
Because it's mildly interesting? You find it interesting to see those stats, therefore setting a specific reputation level gives you the incentive to gain reputation to see those stats.
Edit: Plus, it looks like there was a "desert" for privileges at the 1000 rep level, so this filled that gap nicely. It's since been filled in with the chat room priv, but that's a relatively recent addition.