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The Ultimate Research Guide to Unmarried Women and the 2014 Elections

June 4, 2014

The Voter Participation Center and Lake Research Partners today are releasing the Ultimate Research Guide to Unmarried Women and the 2014 Elections. An invaluable resource for political observers, activists and the media, the Guide contains detailed information on unmarried women and other members of the Rising American Electorate, key voting blocs that will determine election outcomes in 2014, 2016 and beyond.

The Ultimate Research Guide analyzes data from the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey (CPS), and details the growing political power of unmarried women voters. The report finds:

  • Unmarried women are among the fastest growing demographic groups, with the largest growth since 2000 in sheer numbers: 10.4 million new eligible voters as November 2012, a 23.2% increase.
  • Over 55 million unmarried women are eligible to vote, comprising 25.6% of the voting eligible population.
  • In the 2012 presidential election, unmarried women were underrepresented, comprising only 24.0% of voters.
  • Married women are more likely to register and vote than unmarried women. However, unmarried women are narrowing the gap, registering to vote and voting in increasing numbers.

The Voter Participation Center coined the term Rising American Electorate (RAE) to describe the voting group that includes unmarried women, people of color and young people aged 18-29. RAE voters helped re-elect President Obama in 2012. And the Republicans in their post-election “autopsy” vowed to broaden their base and appeal to these voters, “especially in Hispanic, African American and Asian Pacific communities.” Our research shows that unmarried women (divorced, separated, widowed, never married) are the largest segment of the RAE voting bloc. They are registering and voting at unprecedented levels and their civic engagement is critical to any candidate’s success.

View the Ultimate Research Guide by VPC and Lake Research Partners or fast facts on unmarried women and the RAE:


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