This directory contains the data behind the story Why Many Americans Don't Vote.
Data presented here comes from polling done by Ipsos for FiveThirtyEight, using Ipsos’s KnowledgePanel, a probability-based online panel that is recruited to be representative of the U.S. population. The poll was conducted from Sept. 15 to Sept. 25 among a sample of U.S. citizens that oversampled young, Black and Hispanic respondents, with 8,327 respondents, and was weighted according to general population benchmarks for U.S. citizens from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey March 2019 Supplement. The voter file company Aristotle then matched respondents to a voter file to more accurately understand their voting history using the panelist’s first name, last name, zip code, and eight characters of their address, using the National Change of Address program if applicable. Sixty-four percent of the sample (5,355 respondents) matched, although we also included respondents who did not match the voter file but described themselves as voting “rarely” or “never” in our survey, so as to avoid underrepresenting nonvoters, who are less likely to be included in the voter file to begin with. We dropped respondents who were only eligible to vote in three elections or fewer. We defined those who almost always vote as those who voted in all (or all but one) of the national elections (presidential and midterm) they were eligible to vote in since 2000; those who vote sometimes as those who voted in at least two elections, but fewer than all the elections they were eligible to vote in (or all but one); and those who rarely or never vote as those who voted in no elections, or just one.
The data included here is the final sample we used: 5,239 respondents who matched to the voter file and whose verified vote history we have, and 597 respondents who did not match to the voter file and described themselves as voting "rarely" or "never," all of whom have been eligible for at least 4 elections.