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Motivating Young Voters of Color

Thank you so much for attending the Netroots panel in which I took part, Motivating Young Voters of Color: Racism, Hate and Other Factors in the 2018 Midterms.

Below, you can download my slides, see my notes for the panel, and learn a little more about me. If you're interested in following Demos' work to improve our democracy and our economy, consider joining our list at the bottom of this page. 

In solidarity,

Youth Turnout in 2018 Midterm Elections

Download Rodney's slides


Youth Turnout in 2018 Midterm Elections

  • Young-adult turnout surged by 188% in early voting compared with 2014. Turnout was at least 10% higher than the 2014 midterms.
  • According to Tufts University’s Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement, 31% of eligible voters age 18-29 actually voted—the highest level of participation [in midterm elections] among youth in the past quarter-century.
  • High Turnout among Voters of Color & Youth reflected national polling indicating increased enthusiasm among these demographics. (Washington Post-ABC News poll showing significantly higher voter enthusiasm among young voters (+25%) and voters of color (+24%).
Historical Midterm Youth Turnout Estimate, by Data Source 1994-2018


Young Voters of Color Poll Findings

  • Higher turnout among young voters of color also corresponded with our findings from pre-election polling that shed light on the factors motivating driving young voters of color to the polls.
  • What we found in pre-election polling was that young people of color overwhelmingly believe change is needed. Over 90% of Black, Latinx, API & Native American indicated things nationally needed to change in the country.


About Rodney
Rodney McKenzie, Jr

Rodney McKenzie, Jr. (@R_McKenzieJr)
Executive VP of Movement Strategies, Demos

Rodney is an experienced community organizer, movement leader and out person of faith with over fifteen years of experience fighting for grassroots political power in marginalized communities. Before joining Dēmos, Rodney was the Director of the Academy for Leadership and Action at the National LGBTQ Task Force, where he led the grassroots organizing strategy that focused on faith organizing across the country. His work at the Task Force focused on disrupting the national narrative that LGBTQ people aren’t people of faith and that people of faith don’t support LGBTQ equality.