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2008 Young Voter Primary Turnout

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 The 2008 elections are shaping up to be the year of the young voter.  After big increases in young voter turnout in 2004 and 2006, many skeptics wondered if the momentum would continue into 2008.

The answer is a resounding yes.  Where comparable exit poll data was available the number of 18-29 year old voters increased in every state's primary or caucus, even doubling and tripling in many. Overall, the number of 18-29 year olds voting in primaries and caucuses in 2008 is 103% more than in the previous set of primary elections.

In addition, while turnout has been high across all age groups, young voters have increased their turnout by much more than any other age cohort.  Turnout has been up, but so has the percent of the electorate young people make up (known as “share”). Not only are young adults voting in larger numbers, they are also increasing their presence at the polls more than are older voters. The results below demonstrate the incredible participation of young voters in 2008:

Turnout of 18-29 Year Olds in the Presidential Primaries

State

Youth Increase

% Increase

D 2004

D 2008

D Increase

R 2000

R 2008

R Increase

Combined

2,412,329

103%

1,110,806

4,963,587

2,191,237

1,236,293

1,769,213

221,092

Iowa

38,788

133%

20,756

55,001

34,245

8,514

13,057

4,543

New Hampshire

28,703

50%

30,770

51,931

21,160

26,203

33,745

7,543

Michigan

-24,277

-18%

-

100,952

-

137,269

112,992

-24,277

South Carolina

35,295

42%

26,446

74,501

48,055

57,310

44,550

-12,760

Florida

209,217

247%

42,771

157,493

114,722

41,970

136,465

94,495

Alabama

-

-

-

69,159

-

-

67,415

-

Arkansas

-

-

-

27,659

-

-

22,458

-

Arizona

21,460

47%

16,726

36,530

19,804

29,040

30,696

1,656

California

335,421

58%

319,028

671,422

352,394

256,313

239,341

-16,972

Connecticut

31,785

167%

6,501

34,719

28,218

12,529

16,097

3,568

Delaware

6,641

222%

2,996

9,637

6,641

-

-

-

Georgia

159,498

126%

68,949

180,345

111,395

57,887

105,990

48,103

Illinois

-

-

-

300,570

-

-

88,501

-

Massachusetts

139,683

139%

55,367

175,635

120,268

45,264

64,679

19,415

Missouri

106,649

125%

37,651

115,275

77,625

47,536

76,560

29,024

New Mexico

-

-

-

11,872

-

-

-

-

New Jersey

-

-

-

144,218

-

-

44,548

-

New York

194,860

160%

57,251

262,325

205,074

64,846

54,631

-10,215

Oklahoma

55,080

188%

18,143

37,549

19,406

11,233

46,908

35,675

Tennessee

95,942

209%

25,857

81,027

55,170

20,063

60,835

40,772

Utah

-

-

-

20,845

-

-

45,401

-

Louisiana

30,886

131%

11,316

38,435

27,119

12,349

16,117

3,767

Maryland

57,138

65%

38,518

108,875

70,356

48,884

35,666

-13,218

Virginia

93,455

95%

31,698

137,939

106,241

66,409

53,623

-12,787

Wisconsin

86,686

95%

91,120

177,806

86,686

-

43,503

-

Ohio

191,809

66%

109,891

349,893

240,002

178,763

130,571

-48,192

Rhode Island

21,384

806%

2,653

24,038

21,384

-

-

-

Texas

431,665

229%

83,923

449,173

365,250

104,796

171,211

66,415

Vermont

7,502

102%

7,385

14,887

7,502

-

-

-

Mississippi

57,058

402%

5,090

57,609

52,519

9,114

13,653

4,539

Pennsylvania

-

-

-

276,800

-

-

-

-

Indiana

-

-

-

216,749

-

-

-

-

North Carolina

-

-

-

217,217

-

-

-

-

Kentucky

-

-

-

89,305

-

-

-

-

Oregon

-

-

-

98,080

-

-

-

-

Puerto Rico

-

-

-

49,995

-

-

-

-

Montana

-

-

-

25,396

-

-

-

-

South Dakota

-

-

-

12,728

-

-

-

-

Sources: vote shares are from CNN exit polls and CIRCLE; vote totals are from CNN and the U.S. Elections Project.