Young Americans are the least certain about how to get an absentee ballot

Linley SandersData Journalist
September 02, 2020, 6:10 PM UTC

Just half of 18-to 24-year-olds (51%) are confident that they know how to obtain an absentee ballot with 62 days to go until the 2020 presidential election.  

Several states have seen a rapid expansion of voting by mail due to the coronavirus pandemic, potentially making absentee ballots a key component of this year’s race as more Americans consider absentee voting over in-person voting. The rules for getting an absentee ballot can vary in each state — some states automatically send all residents a ballot while others require specific excuses to be met. 

YouGov data indicates that older Americans are the most confident about how to request an absentee ballot in their state and newly eligible adults are less confident. Nearly four in five Americans who are 65 or older are very or somewhat confident in requesting an absentee ballot.

That confidence appears to lessen with youth: just 55 percent of 25-to 34-year-olds and 51 percent of 18-to 24-year-olds are confident in how to request an absentee ballot in their state. 

See the original results from this YouGov Poll and sign up for the YouGov Daily e-newsletter 

Related: When Americans think the 2020 presidential election winner will be announced 

MethodologyThe survey question, “How confident are you that you know how to request a mail-in absentee ballot in your state?” was asked of 45052 US adults ages 18 and over. Interviews were conducted online August 14 – 17, 2020. Results are weighted to be nationally representative.    

Image: Getty