New Study Reveals 14% of Utah 16- and 17-year-olds Are Pre-registered to Vote
After the Utah Legislature passed a law in April of 2018, pre-registered 17-year-olds who will turn 18 on or before the next general election are qualified to vote in any regular, municipal, or presidential primary election. The 2018 primary elections made Utah history as they were the first to allow pre-registered 17-year-olds to cast a ballot in the state. Despite the promise of this new law, more than two-thirds of the counties in Utah had fewer than 20% of 16- and 17-year-olds pre-registered.
Utah’s pre-registration rate is comparable to the rate in California, but falls far below the rates in Oregon and Colorado, both of which have pre-registration rates around 30%. Summit County has the highest pre-registration rate in the state, with 32% of 16- and 17-year olds pre-registered. In Salt Lake County, with the highest youth population in the state, 16% of the county’s 16- and 17-year-olds were pre-registered to vote. Carbon County has the lowest pre-registration rate in the state, with only 3% of 16- and 17-year olds pre-registered.
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