Poll: Most eligible teens plan to vote in November election

Voting-eligible teens say they plan to vote in the Nov. 6 election because it’s good for the country. That’s the takeaway from a national survey conducted by Education Week Research Center.

About 63 percent of the 1,300 young adults (ages 18-19) contacted in a September online survey said they plan to vote. The survey’s margin of error is 3 percent.

The results of the 25-question survey also found:

  • 40 percent of respondents said the Parkland school shooting increased political engagement.
  • 39 percent of teens use family members for top source of voting information.
  • 47 percent of respondents cannot name a single candidate.
  • Students who’ve never taken civics in school are less likely to plan to vote.

A closer look

Teens who plan to vote are more likely to be:

  • Suburban
  • Identify as liberal
  • Asian
  • A current or former private school student
  • Engaged in civic-related activities
  • Identify school shootings as their top concern

Teens who don’t plan to vote are more likely to:

  • Identify as politically moderate
  • Be unengaged in civic activities
  • Identify their top concern as guns and gun control

Idaho teens react

Auria Short, 18, Rigby resident:

I may not be the most politically minded individual, but I know that there are people I would rather have in office than the people that currently are,” she said.

“I know that the government doesn’t properly represent the actual people, which is supposed to be the point of our government. If we aren’t willing to vote for and stand for what we believe in, then what’s the point?”

Kylee Callister, 19, attends College of Eastern Idaho:

“I just don’t want to vote, I’m not interested in politics at all,” she said.

“What’s one vote, anyway?”

Egzona Rexhepi, 18, Boise State University student:

“Following the Parkland school shooting, the type of politics I pursued was changed dramatically,” she said.

“Instead of following the efforts of seemingly progressive organizations, I learned to lead instead. Now, I focus all of my political energy on ensuring my generation specifically is heard, because our perspective is ignored far too often.”

Declan Tomlinson, 18, Loyola Marymount University student:

“I vote because politics is one thing that actually matters and it affects us daily, sometimes we don’t see change right away but we have to remember that in the long run our voices matter,” he said.

“The Parkland school shooting did get me into politics because it seemed that if we young people weren’t gonna try to fix the system, no one would.”


Andrew Reed

Get EdNews in your inbox

Weekly round up every Friday