Wednesday, June 22, 2016

BlogTalkUSA: The Next Generation of Texas Voters

On our Tuesday evening program "Eyes Wide Open - Dem Blog Talk," this week, my co-host Rheana Nevitt Piegols and I talked with Celia Morgan, President of the Texas Young Democrats organization and Vice-Chair of the Young Democrats of America Labor Caucus.

We talked with Celia about the Texas Young Democrats caucus at the Texas State Democratic Convention last week, the growing Texas Young Democrats engagement in the political process, and Celia's election to be a delegate for Bernie Sanders at Democratic National Convention.

Click to listen to our podcast:

Listen or download - MP3

While Anglo Texans still make up the largest adult racial group of Texas voters, the state's demographic future is in the hands of younger Texans. Older voters still decide who controls the levers of power in government because more than three quarters of older voters consistently vote in presidential elections, while far less than half of eligible younger voters typically register and turn out to vote. If younger voters registered and turned out to vote at same rate as older voters, younger voters would dominate election results.

New figures on age, race and ethnicity released this week by the U.S. Census Bureau, which tracks population change from July 2014 to July 2015, show older generations of Texas are more white, while younger Texans are much more likely to be part of a racial or ethnic minority group. Almost 68 percent of Texans aged 19 and younger are non-white. That's a reversal of the racial breakdown among Texans 65 and older, almost two-thirds of whom are white while only about 36 percent are people of color.

For the November 2008 presidential election, 70 percent of registered Collin Co., Texas voters turned out to vote, but turnout was only 65 percent for the November 2012 presidential election. About 10,000 more younger Collin Co. voters turned out in 2008 that in 2012.  If the turnout rate for the November 2016 presidential election is the same as for the 2012 election, the table below shows projected 2016 Collin Co turnout by age group.  If the 2016 turnout rate among younger voters equaled the turnout rate of older voters, young voters would dominate election results.

Collin Co. Turnout for 
Nov. 2012 Pres. Election

Projected Collin Co. Turnout
for Nov. 2016 Pres. Election

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