SUPER TUESDAY ANALYSIS: OLDER AMERICANS PLAYED A PIVOTAL ROLE

This week’s Super Tuesday primaries delivered an impressive resurgence for Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential aspirations . . . and demonstrated the power of voters age 50 and up.

Here’s a quick snapshot of the pivotal role they played, based on the public exit polling:

  • The 50+ were the most powerful voting segment on Super Tuesday. They were a majority of primary voters in every state, ranging from 51% in Minnesota to 64% in Colorado.
  • There were more seniors 65+ than voters under 30 in every Super Tuesday state. In Alabama, Colorado, Oklahoma, and Tennessee, there were more than three times as many seniors as youth under 30. In Maine, North Carolina, and Vermont, there were more than twice as many.
  • Joe Biden’s wins were powered by 50+ voters. He won big among voters age 50 and up in Alabama (73%), Virginia (67%), Minnesota (55%), Tennessee (51%), North Carolina (50%), Oklahoma (47%), Maine (43%), Massachusetts (43%), and Texas (43%). In fact, the 50+ made up at least two-thirds (67%) – and as much as 79% – of Biden voters in all Super Tuesday states.
  • Bernie Sanders wins when he adds older voters to his coalition. On Super Tuesday, he carried the 50+ in Colorado and Vermont. And, he made major inroads with older voters in California which propelled him to victory.

In the coming days, AARP’s She’s the Difference campaign will be digging into the exit polling data to learn more about how older women in particular voted and what it means for the remaining primaries and November’s general election. If patterns from prior elections hold, women 50+ will likely account for 26 – 30% of ballots cast in battleground states like Michigan, Wisconsin, Arizona, and Florida.

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