Midterms 2018: Here’s How College Students Voted

The Midterm Elections came and went, and when the dust settled, everyone — on both of sides of the aisle — survived. Luckily, there was no political apocalypse: citizens voted and our nation’s proud Democratic process was effective once again.

While your perception of the results largely depends on which political party you affiliate yourself with, one thing that all Americans can agree is a positive sign is that voter turnout was up essentially across the board — especially among young voters.

Prior to the election, a biannual poll released by the Harvard University Institute of Politics showed that 40 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds said they will “definitely vote” in the 2018 midterm elections, which represented a significant increase over the turnout in 2010 and 2014.

College-Aged Voter Turnout: Key Statistics

  • Voters ages 18 to 29 will make up 13 percent of the overall electorate in this year’s midterms, up from 11 percent in 2014. (The Atlantic)
  • A clear 68% of voters aged 18-24 chose the Democrats according to exit polls. (Guardian)
  • More than 3.3 million voters from that group cast their votes early, 188% increase from 2014. (The Atlantic)
  • At the University of Arizona precinct in Tucson, Arizona, NextGen reported 2018 turnout was about halfway to 2016 presidential election turnout levels — and that was in the afternoon. And at three precincts NextGen was tracking around the state, turnout had well surpassed levels from the 2014 midterm elections. (Vox)
  • The University of California-Irvine precinct surpassed 2014 turnout totals with early votes alone, according to NextGen. As of noon PT, 2018 turnout was more than four times the turnout of 2014, the group reported. (Vox)
  • At Penn State University, NextGen was reporting 1 in 4 registered voters have cast ballots by around 6 pm ET. In 2014, fewer than 1 in 20 registered voters at Penn State actually voted. (Vox)
  • At the University of Florida, students cast more than 1,000 additional votes than they did in 2014, by around 6 pm ET. NextGen estimated a 20 percent turnout jump from 2014. (Vox)
  • In New Hampshire, 2018 vote totals have surpassed 2014 vote totals at most colleges and universities NextGen was tracking by 4 pm.  (Vox)

via The Atlantic:

Preliminary results from ABC exit polls suggest that voters ages 18 to 29 will make up 13 percent of the overall electorate in this year’s midterms, up from 11 percent in 2014. While early voting across every age group increased compared with the 2014 midterms, the surge is most pronounced among voters ages 18 to 29. More than 3.3 million voters from that group cast their votes early. That’s a 188 percent increase from 2014, according to data from TargetSmart, a political-data-analysis firm.

The spike in youth turnout in several key battleground states is particularly striking. In Texas, where young voters have rallied behind the Democratic Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke, early voting increased fivefold for voters ages 18 to 29, according to The Hill. It’s the same story in Nevada, where there’s another hotly contested Senate race: Five times as many young voters turned out early in 2018 as they did in 2014.

One thing has become clear: no matter which side of the aisle you fall on, both sides of the political spectrum are as energized as they’ve been in some time, which, if you believe in principles of America’s democracy, is an inherently good thing.

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