Understanding the Millennial Vote in 2016: Findings from GenForward

Dec 1, 2016

Young adults now represent the largest generation of Americans, and they are by far the most racially and ethnically diverse generation in the country.2 About 19 percent of millennials identify as Latino or Hispanic, 13 percent as Black or African American, and 6 percent as Asian American. Thus, to fully understand how young people think about elections and politicians, issues such as terrorism or gun violence, as well as their economic futures and race relations, we have to apply an intersectional lens and pay attention to characteristics such as race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality. In this report, we provide an extensive analysis of the youth vote in the 2016 presidential election. Specifically, we look at data we collected in early and late October to give greater detail to the factors that shaped how different groups of young adults voted in this election. The report reflects the Black Youth Project's sustained commitment to knowledge, voice and action among young people, in particular young people of color. We create knowledge by detailing the real-life experiences of young people and how their perspectives and preferences differ based on their race and ethnicity. We help amplify their voices by providing platforms and opportunities for young people to weigh in on the issues most important to them. Finally, we present our data in an accessible form to multiple constituencies with the hope that our findings will contribute to a call to action to bring about change rooted in the ways young people of color experience contemporary America and imagine a more equal and just future.

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