April 19, 2016 9:16 am

High youth vote could be the reason for the Liberal government: report

An Elections Canada sign points voters towards the polls at Metro Hall in Toronto on Monday, Oct. 19, 2015.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marta Iwanek
A A

OTTAWA – Newly released data on youth voters suggests they were neither apathetic nor disengaged in the last election – and instead may be primed to become the most powerful voting bloc in the country.

A report commissioned by the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations suggests just over half of Canadians aged 18 to 25 went to the polls in the last election, a sharp increase from the 39 per cent turnout in 2011.

Story continues below

The association’s executive director, Michael McDonald, says the data suggest the Liberals have young voters to thank for their majority in the House of Commons.

READ MORE: Should the voting age be lowered to 16? 

For the Liberals, that means they have to not let down a generation of voters who they need to come out again in just over three years when Justin Trudeau and his party look to get re-elected, says David Coletto of Abacus Research.

The results are from an online survey of 1,000 Canadians aged 18 to 25 conducted Feb. 8-15.

The margin of error is plus or minus 3.2 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

WATCH: Should we lower the voting age in Nova Scotia

A by-the-numbers look at youth voter turnout in the last election:

  • 51: Percentage of eligible voters aged 18-25 who cast ballots.
  • 12: Percentage point increase in the youth vote from 2011
  • 45: Percentage of young voters who voted Liberal
  • 16: Percentage of the youth vote the Liberals garnered in 2011
  • 39: Percentage of young voters that voted in 2011
  • 72: Percentage of post-secondary students who voted in the federal election
  • 63: Percentage of respondents who said creating jobs for young Canadians should be a key focus for the Liberals, the most of any issue
  • 20: Percentage of students who want the Liberals to make legalizing marijuana one of the government’s top priorities, the second lowest of any issue

(Source: Abacus Data and Canadian Alliance of Student Associations)

Report an error

Comments

Want to discuss? Please read our Commenting Policy first.