Youth vote down significantly in 2012 elections, erasing much of gains in 2004/2008

Social Capital Blog

The 2012 Current Population Survey November supplement has now been released which enables one to examine voting patterns by different racial and ethnic groups and different age groups.

Youth turnout among those ages 18-24 dropped 7.3 percentage points from 2008 to 2012, to 41.2%. This contravenes a CIRCLE report that preliminary turnout in 2012 was closer to 50%. [These declines have undone a lot of the gains in youth turnout in the 2004 and 2008 presidential elections.]

If one breaks it down by racial origin, among all racial groups, voting rates for 18-24 year olds were down from 2008 to 2012, declining by 7.4% for non-Hispanic whites, 4.6% for Hispanics and 6.7% for blacks.  This reverses patterns seen in the 2004 and 2008 presidential elections where the biggest voting increases came from 18-24 year olds.  For example, from 2004 to 2008, Hispanic 18-24 year olds and black 18-24 year olds increased their voting rates by…

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