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Report: Young People, Communities of Color and Unmarried Women Are a Growing Voting Bloc Poised for Outsized Impact in 2020

July 24, 2019

Today, we released a new report demonstrating that the Rising American Electorate (RAE), a crucial voting bloc consisting of young people, communities of color and unmarried women, has grown substantially and is poised to have an outsized impact in 2020. This follows the enormous influence this group had in 2018’s historic midterm elections.

The report, commissioned by VPC and produced by Lake Research Partners, offers a detailed analysis of changes in the American electorate and notes key trends in voting behavior nationally and in the states. Some findings from the report include:

  • The RAE is projected to be 64% of the Vote Eligible Population by the 2020 elections, and 56% of the RAE are projected to turn out.
  • The number of RAE voters increased by nearly 24 million (22.3%) from 2014 to 2018, while the number of non-RAE voters only increased by six million (5.7%).
  • The RAE, for the first time, was a majority share in a mid-term election and will be a majority share of the electorate in 2020.
  • While RAE turnout has increased in recent elections, the voters who make up RAE still do not register to vote or turn out in proportion to their share of the population. Thirty nine percent of the RAE reports they are not registered to vote, compared with 24% of the non-RAE population.
  • For the first time in any midterm election, a majority of voting-eligible women were unmarried in 2018. Additionally, 48% of unmarried women voted in 2018, their highest share in any midterm election.
  • Gen-Z will make up 10% of the Vote Eligible Population in 2020, the first presidential election in which they are eligible to vote. Combined with millennials (21%), they will make up one-third of the electorate.

“Young people, communities of color and unmarried women will play a huge role in electing our next president. We saw in the 2018 midterms just how powerful that voting bloc can be,” said Page Gardner, founder and president of VPC. “This report shows that systemic, structural barriers can still limit the RAE’s participation in elections. That’s why we can’t be complacent. We must register more voters – especially those from traditionally underrepresented groups – and provide them with the information they need to cast their ballots in 2020.”

“With the rapid growth we are seeing among the RAE, its impact is on par to play a role in our electoral politics for years to come,” said Celinda Lake, President of Lake Research Partners. “However, this critical voting bloc will only live up to its full potential with continued growth of registration and turnout rates.”

View the Executive Summary here:

View the full report here:

The Voter Participation Center registers and mobilizes the Rising American Electorate – unmarried women, communities of color, and young people. VPC has registered more than four million people since 2003 and works to inspire underrepresented groups to increase their civic engagement and permanently change the American electorate.

 

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