The Youth Vote

Solutions Journalism Network

The 2018 midterm election witnessed a dramatic increase in young voter turnout—by some measures, a 25-year high. Recent surveys suggest that the enthusiasm of the 2018 midterms may translate into even more young voters heading to the polls in 2020. This marks the reversal of a decades-long trend in declining participation among young voters that has been a constant since the 1970s. 

During the 1960s, pressure from the student activist movement boosted support for lowering the voting age in the United States from 21 to 18. Then, in 1971, Congress ratified the twenty-sixth amendment to the US Constitution, which granted citizens 18 years of age the right to vote. Since then, young voters have turned out at rates lower than older age groups. Even the recent uptick in young voter turnout, from around 20 percent in the 2014 midterms to 31 percent in 2018, represents the lowest turnout of any age group.

The stories in this collection illustrate strategies that are actually working to mobilize young people; read on to learn what you can do on your campus and in your community to help renew democracy!

Click here for more stories in the Solutions Story Tracker on Democracy

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