CIRCLE (The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement)
conducts research on the civic and political engagement of young Americans.
The Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement

February 2019 E-Update

February 28th, 2019
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Statewide Youth Turnout Confirms Trend of Increased 2018 Participation

CIRCLE has released an initial analysis of youth turnout (ages 18-29) in 17 states for which voter file data first became available. In every single state, youth turnout was higher than in 2014—usually by a significant margin. In addition, in all but two states, the increase in youth turnout from 2014 to 2018 was higher than the increase in turnout among the general (all ages) electorate.

In several states the turnout increase was dramatic, and likely helped shape a statewide election:

  • Georgia: Youth voter turnout more than doubled between 2014 and 2018, from 13.3% to 33%, fueling Stacey Abrams’ near upset of Governor Brian Kemp.
  • Montana: Youth turnout more than doubled as well—from 17.6% in 2014 to 42.1% in 2018—as young people turned out in droves to carry incumbent Democratic Senator Jon Tester to a close victory.
  • Nevada: Youth turnout more than tripled, from 8.8% to 28.7%. Jacky Rosen unseated incumbent Dean Heller for one of the few Senate seats that flipped from a Republican to a Democrat in 2018.

Read more and check out the data. We will release youth turnout from additional states soon!

Post-Parkland Activism Fueled Youth Engagement in 2018 Midterms

A new analysis based on our pre- and post-election polling suggests that the youth-led gun violence prevention movement in the wake of the Parkland school shooting had a wide-ranging impact on young people’s (ages 18-24) participation in the 2018 midterm elections. Among our findings:

  • Nearly two-thirds of youth (64%) said they paid some or a lot of attention to news about the shooting.
  • Young people who said they were either supporters of or participants in the anti-gun violence movement were 21 percentage points more likely to vote (self-reported turnout).
  • Among all 18 to 24-year-olds, 43% said that the Parkland shooting influenced their vote choice—20% said it influenced their vote “a lot.”

Read more

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Educators: Explore 22×20’s Media-Making Toolkit

22×20 is a network of media, cultural, and educational partners amplifying and diversifying teen voice, political expression, and media creation in the lead-up to the 2020 election and beyond. The network is co-led by CIRCLE and The LAMP.

As part of this work, 22×20 has released a comprehensive youth media-making toolkit for educators working with young people, ages 13-18. It includes lesson plans, resources, and activity sheets focused on creating memes, videos, GIFs, and more!

Check it out and share with teachers in your life!


CIRCLE in the News

– CNN: Fact Check: Did Sanders win more young voters in 2016 than Clinton and Trump combined?

– Education Week: Mounting Evidence Points to Surge in Young Voters

– NBC News: After Parkland, Students Fight for Their Rights — Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness

– San Francisco Chronicle: California 17-year-olds would get the vote under pair of state bills

© 2010 CIRCLE (The Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement)

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