The Youth Vote is Important, Especially this November

The youth vote is likely to be pivotal in the upcoming midterm elections, at least according to researchers tracking voting trends at Tufts University. Analysis from The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE) suggests that this November, millennials could have significant impact in a handful of competitive House and Senate races, namely in the Iowa 3rd, Arizona 1st, Arizona 9th, and New York 23rd districts, and Senate races in Alaska, Colorado, Louisiana and North Carolina. The big prize is control over the U.S. Senate, which currently rests with the Democrats. Trends and demographic data in these key races paint a picture of the power of the youth vote this November.  For example, Alaska’s voting youth, aged 18-29, make up more than 25 percent of the state’s population. In Colorado’s 2010 midterm election, nearly 60 percent of the state’s registered youth went to the polls, 11 percent higher than the national average.

The analysis is based on data featured in two recently released tools by CIRCLE for studying political engagement among American youth: a congressional district mapping tool and a state-by-state mapping feature on youth voting and youth demographics. Should this group turn out, the impact of their vote and voice will be felt nationwide.

While the youth vote has been historically low for midterm elections, Ashley Spillane, President of Rock The Vote recently spoke with SIRUSXM’s Tim Farley about how they are reaching young people and energizing them to register and then vote. Spillane states that this is the “largest generation in our nation’s history… young people can have their voice heard” this election.