CIRCLE’s Youth Electoral Significance Index rankings highlight that young voters can decide congressional elections all across the country.
Research suggests that policies like online, automatic, and pre-registration can increase youth voter participation, especially where there is effective and equitable implementation.
We estimate that 20% of youth voted in New Jersey and 27% in Virginia, in both cases comparable to participation in previous gubernatorial elections.
CIRCLE’s exclusive data-based rankings of the races where youth can influence results seek to expand conversations about young people’s role in elections.
Youth voter turnout was lower than in 2017 and highlights the need for continued efforts to reach and engage all young people.
Both states had above average youth turnout in 2018 and 2020, but outreach to young people—especially youth of color—remains key for November.
CIRCLE co-led qualitative and quantitative studies that found a complex relationship between social movements and electoral engagement.
White youth voted at the highest rate in 2020, but youth of color are closing the gap.
Our analysis of youth voter turnout nationwide finds wide variation between states and underscores the importance of electoral laws and policies that help grow voters.
New Jersey led the region and the nation in youth voter turnout in 2020; six states in the Northeast had turnout rates above 50%.