CAWP Releases Report on Gender Turnout in 2020 Elections

May 24, 2021

The Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP) has released a report and data on gender turnout in the 2020 elections. According to CAWP, “Women continued their long streak of out-voting men in presidential elections. Women voted in higher raw numbers and in greater proportions than their male counterparts in the 2020 presidential election, with women casting nearly 10 million more votes than men and 68.4% of eligible adult women casting a ballot, while 65% of eligible men voted. These data points, combined with the significant gender gap in vote choice in the 2020 presidential election, as shown in our presidential vote choice fact sheet, illustrate the pivotal role that women played in the election of Joe Biden and the defeat of Donald Trump.”

Comparing differences in turnout across race/ethnicity, age group, educational attainment, and marital status both between and among genders yields new insights that challenge simplistic narratives about women voters. Some key takeaways from the CAWP report:

  • Turnout increased from 2016 among men and women across all racial and ethnic groups, although the largest increases were among Asian American voters and Hispanic voters. 
  • Reported voter turnout increased across all age groups, particularly among younger voters (18 to 44). Voter turnout among voters age 18 to 24 was up by almost 8 percentage points among women and 9 percentage points among men compared to 2016.
  • Among citizens with less than a 9th grade education, men have historically turned out at slightly higher rates than women. In 2020, women in this group reported voting at higher rates – 38.2% vs. 37%.
  • Consistent with trends over time, the gender gap among married voters tends to be very small, but the gender gap among voters who have never married was 7.4 percentage points, with 60.5% of women reporting that they voted vs. 53.1% of men.

Find more data, as well as new visualizations and comparisons over time, click the link here: Gender Differences in Voter Turnout page.

About CAWP 
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 women’s political participation in the United States. Its mission is to promote greater knowledge and understanding about the role of women in American politics, enhance women’s influence in public life, and expand the diversity of women in politics and government. CAWP’s education and outreach programs translate research findings into action, addressing women’s under-representation in political leadership with effective, intersectional, and imaginative programs serving a variety of audiences. As the world has watched Americans considering female candidates for the nation’s highest offices, CAWP’s five decades of analyzing and interpreting women’s participation in American politics have provided a foundation and context for the discussion.