University of Southern California
USC Dornsife: College of Letters, Arts and Sciences

The Undermobilization of Young Voters in California

The Undermobilization of Young Voters in California: Tapping the Potential to Build Youth Political Power

Veronica Terriquez and Josefina Flores Morales

Voter turnout during midterm elections is consistently much lower than turnout in a presidential election year, when the presidential race draws a lot of media attention. Participation in midterm elections tends to be especially low among young eligible voters. Although they have much at stake in congressional, state, and local elections, young adults may be less aware of the implications of election outcomes than their older counterparts. The next US midterm election, in November 2022, presents an opportunity to activate young adults who remain undermobilized. This report shows patterns of voter registration and turnout in California for eligible voters aged 18–34 in the 2018 midterm election. Results are disaggregated by county to inform efforts to register and educate young voters.

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