American Government and Politics

A Data-Driven Analysis of Youth Turnout Impact on U.S. Presidential Elections

Abstract

Youth voters between 18 and 29 years of age have consistently had the lowest turnout among all age groups in U.S. presidential elections. This research was designed to study whether the number of votes from this age group would make a difference on the election results, had young voters participated more actively. An original method was devised to do so by simulating higher-than-actual youth voter turnout using various voting scenarios – combinations of voting rates and voter choices derived from past elections. The findings are: When 18- to 29-year olds participate in the election as actively as the entire voting population, they are definitely a formidable force in influencing the presidential election results. If either party energizes those young voters to participate and earns their votes with the margin it saw in its past wins in key states, the party stands a much better chance to win the election.

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