The 2020 Presidential election between incumbent President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden saw one of the highest voter turnouts in modern history, despite occurring amid a global pandemic, as states continued to enforce lockdown rules. Around 66 percent of all eligible voters cast their ballots in the presidential election, 7 percent higher than in 2016. Significant contributing factors included the introduction of universal mail-in voting in some states, higher turnout in early voting in most states, and efforts to increase voter registration in battleground states.
2020 Election Voter Turnout
The 2020 election produced the highest voter turnout across all age and race groups since 1900. According to the U.S. Census, 17 million more people voted in the 2020 presidential election than in 2016.
Despite voter registration challenges caused by the pandemic, voters utilized non-traditional ways to vote, specifically early voting and vote-by-mail; 69% voted using these two methods. States with the highest increase in voter turnout voted entirely or almost entirely by mail. Because of the record number of mail-in ballots, some states needed more days to count the votes. President Biden was not announced as the projected winner by media organizations until four days after Election Day.
In addition to the historic presidential turnout, Georgia saw record voter turnout for special elections: Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock won seats in the United States Senate (the first Democratic victories in Georgia in 20 years). Georgia Democrats attribute much of their success in the 2020 elections to Stacey Abrams. She registered over 800,000 new Georgia voters before the 2020 elections and founded Fair Fight Action. In late 2020, Georgia’s Secretary of State Brad Raffenspergeer accused the organization of pushing voting machine misinformation in the state.
- Why do you think 2020 voter turnout was exceptionally high?
- If 69% of votes in the 2020 election were absentee and early voting, why do you believe states are not expanding access to these?
- If you had the choice, which method of voting would you use?
Browse videos, podcasts, news and articles from around the web about this topic. All content is tagged by bias so you can find out how people are reacting across party lines.
Turnout soared in 2020 as nearly two-thirds of eligible U.S. voters cast ballots for president
The article analyzes key statistics from the 2020 election, revealing record-breaking turnout compared to other American elections. However, it recognizes that American elections still lag behind other developed democracies regarding voter turnout.
Stats Prove Ballot Stuffing
The article features former Democratic strategist Dick Morris and his take on the significant increase in voter turnout in the 2020 election. He attributes it to ballot-stuffing, arguing there is no reasonable explanation for the substantial spike in votes.
The 2020 Election Set a Record for Voter Turnout. But Why Is It Normal for So Many Americans to Sit Out Elections?
The article summarizes the historic turnout in the 2020 election but qualifies the apparent success by mentioning that it is still lower than other national elections in other countries. It discusses the history of voter turnout, when it last peaked, and what the 2020 election means for the future.
The Miracle and Tragedy of the 2020 U.S. Election
The article reviews the circumstances that led to the 2020 election and their impact on voter turnout, from access to mail-in voting to how the Covid-19 pandemic affected voting in person.
Winning ugly is still winning
The podcast breaks down all the big news from the 2020 election from House and Senate results and split, the presidential election, voter turnout, demographic turnout, and polling errors. This podcast is not specifically about voter turnout, but it is an excellent source to understand the more detailed aspects of the 2020 election if students would like supplementary information.
How We Expect the Electorate To Look in 2020
Given the information from early voting turnout and polling projections, analysts at FiveThirtyEight predict the record turnout of the 2020 election and how voter demographics will compare to that of the 2016 election.
Historic voter turnout keeps getting bigger
This video discusses the unprecedented voter turnout and how many votes were cast during the early voting period. CNBC news correspondents interview early voters in North Carolina and ask why they chose to vote in the 2020 election. They also look into record-breaking numbers in Georgia, another battleground state.