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Who Votes Now?Demographics, Issues, Inequality, and Turnout in the United States$
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Jan E. Leighley and Jonathan Nagler

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780691159348

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691159348.001.0001

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Demographics of Turnout

Demographics of Turnout

(p.16) Two Demographics of Turnout
Who Votes Now?

Jan E. Leighley

Jonathan Nagler

Princeton University Press

This chapter uses data from the U.S. Census Bureau's Current Population Survey to provide an extensive description and discussion of aggregate and demographic group-specific turnout rates since 1972, focusing on education, income, race, ethnicity, age, gender, and marital status. Among the findings is that voter turnout in presidential elections since 1972 has not declined systematically. Instead, it has been slightly higher in some elections, and slightly lower in other elections. Second, the relationships among income, education, and voter turnout are quite strong: the probability of a highly educated or wealthy individual casting a ballot is much, much higher than the probability of a less-educated or poorer individual casting a ballot. Third, these differences in turnout have been remarkably stable over this thirty-six-year period. Fourth, there is less stability in turnout patterns by age, gender, and ethnicity since 1972 compared to those of education and income.

Keywords:   U.S. presidential elections, voter behavior, voter turnout, U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, demographics

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