In an Oct. 19 post, Rock the Vote, Paul Riemer, reports that politicians are turning to peer-to-peer networks like Facebook and My Space to reach young voters. Rock the Vote notes that they are active there as well, hoping to galvanize young voters, though they appear to be non-partisan (maybe I just didn't read far enough back!). They also note Young Voters Stragies as a youth vote activist website. That website notes 15 partner organizations, focused on young women, geographical areas, Public Interest Research Groups, among others. Interesting movement. I hope they manage to engage more young voters.
The Census Bureau link reports on voter turnout (the link is for 1998, but they have other years, too). And academics study this sort of thing (see link to Columbia University webpage on voting and age, looking at voter registration and behavior among age groups they call DotNet, GenX, Boomer and Dutiful. They have graphs from 1972 - 2004 (the illustration for this post!). Very interesting site. What is shows is that the younger you are, the less likely you are to be registered or to vote regularly. Not a very good democracy if so many folks opt out of the system!