No other group is as disengaged from elections as youth. Voter turnout in the United States trails that of other industrialized societies, and is particularly anemic among youth
between the ages of 18 and 24. The under-representation of youth voters has been observed ever since eighteen year olds were enfranchised in 1972 (for evidence, see Levine and Lopez, 2002;Bennett, 1997). In the 1976 election, 18-24 year olds made up 18 percent of the eligible electorate, but only 13 percent of the voting electorate, reflecting under-representation by one-third. In the subsequent off-year election of 1978, under-representation of 18-24 year-olds increased to 50%. Twenty years later, youth voters numbered 13 percent of the voting age population, and a mere five percent of those who voted.