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What We Know About Young Voters

By Rock The Vote

Young Democratic Voters
Today’s 18-29 year olds lean strongly Democratic. Democrats have won the majority of young adults’ votes for the past two major elections.

Party ID of 18-20 Year Olds Across Demographic Subsets
 

Outlook
73% of young Democrats believe that the country is on the wrong track, compared to 70% of young Independents and 32% of young Republicans.1

Jobs and the economy is the top issue of concern, followed by Iraq, health care, education and the cost of college, and the environment and global warming.2

Voting Trends
2004:
  young voters were the only age group to prefer the Democratic ticket over the Republican.

2006:  young voters gave Democrats a 22-point advantage in the Congressional elections, with 60% voting for Democratic candidates and 38% for Republicans.3

Party ID By Demographics
47% of 18-29 year olds, 55% of young women, compared to 38% of young men, identify as Democrats along with 73% of African-Americans and 51% of Latinos 4

How Generation Influences Party 5
How Generation Influences Party


Young Republican Voters
Young Republicans have been voting in record numbers over the course of the last four years. In 2008, young Republican turnout is up in early primary states.

Who Are Young Republicans?
Overall, 28% of 18-29 year olds identify as Republicans. Among young men, 30% identify as Republicans, compared to 26% of young women. Republican identification is also highest among Caucasian youth, with 35% identifying as Republicans.1


Republican Party ID Among 18-29 Year Olds
 


Political Attitudes
Young Republicans say jobs and the economy is their top issue of concern, followed by immigration, gas prices, health care, terrorism and homeland security, and the federal budget deficit.

Young Republicans identified immigration as more important than any other subset of the youth demographic. In so doing, 15% of young Republicans identified it as their top issue, while 14% of young Latinos classed it as their number one issue.  Overall, 9% of young men (in general) felt that immigration was their most important concern.

Terrorism and homeland security, and the federal budget deficit also registered higher among young Republicans, both at 8%, than overall respondents at 5% each.2

Issues of Concern – Republican
Courting young Republicans is a long-term investment that also pays short term dividends. As young Republican turnout continues to rise, they will become an increasingly important part of the Republican electorate.

1 Rock the Vote 2008 Post Super Tuesday Nationwide Survey of 18-29 year olds
2 Rock the Vote 2008 Post Super Tuesday Nationwide Survey of 18-29 year olds
3 National Election Pool Exit Polls, 2004 and 2006
4 Rock the Vote 2008 Post Super Tuesday Nationwide Survey of 18-29 year olds
5 Original Chart by Bill Marsh at the New York Times and the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press.

This content was taken from Rock the Vote’s ‘Winning Young Voters’
and can be found in its entirety at www.rockthevote.com

The content has been printed with the permission of
Rock The Vote, a partnership between Rock the Vote and
WireTap Magazine. All rights reserved by and
to Rock the Vote and WireTap Magazine.

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