Women voted in greater numbers and higher proportions than men in 2016, consistent with patterns evident in all presidential elections since 1980, according to a new fact sheet from the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP), a unit of the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University New Brunswick. CAWP reported on the latest voting data from the U.S. Bureau of the Census and compared the numbers with recent presidential election years. “Women have voted in greater proportions than men since 1980, and the number of women voting has been greater than the number of men voting since 1964,” noted CAWP director Debbie Walsh. The Census data show that among non-senior citizens (18-64), a higher proportion of women than men voted in every presidential election year since 1996. Only among the oldest voters (65 and up) did men outvote women in 2016 and other recent elections. Looking at race/ethnicity, the number of female voters in recent elections has exceeded the number of male voters among Asians/Pacific Islanders, Blacks, Hispanics, and Whites. While the difference in voter turnout rates between the sexes is greatest for Blacks, women have voted at higher rates than men among Blacks, Hispanics, and Whites in the last eight presidential elections. In 2000, the first year for which data are available, Asian/Pacific Islander men voted at a slightly higher rate than Asian/Pacific Islander women; since 2004, Asian/Pacific Islander women have voted at rates equal to or higher than rates for Asian/Pacific Islander men. The latest numbers are presented in a new edition of CAWP’s fact sheet, Gender Differences in Voter Turnout, available on the CAWP website. The fact sheet provides the 2016 information along with comparative data for recent presidential election years. Also provided are voter turnout numbers for men and women in non-presidential election years dating back to 1966 and voter registration numbers for men and women dating back to 1980.
The Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP), a unit of the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, is nationally recognized as the leading source of scholarly research and current data about American women’s political participation. Its mission is to promote greater knowledge and understanding about women’s participation in politics and government and to enhance women’s influence and leadership in public life. CAWP’s education and outreach programs translate research findings into action, addressing women’s underrepresentation in political leadership with effective, imaginative programs serving a variety of audiences. As the world has watched Americans considering female candidates for the nation’s highest offices, CAWP’s over four decades of analyzing and interpreting women’s participation in American politics have provided a foundation and context for the discussion. –