With just under a week to go, 63 per cent of Brits say are interested in the election – with just as many 18-24 year olds interested as general voters.
This is according to new BMG Research polling for the Electoral Reform Society. The findings follow a recent TV debate, with the results suggesting that contrary to voters being bored by another election, they are quite highly engaged.
30 per cent of all voters say they feel well informed about the vote, with the figures for 18-24 year olds similar, at 25 per cent, suggesting campaigns targeting young people have had some success.
There’s a substantial gap towards the middle – 25 per cent of 25-34 year olds feel poorly informed (to 26 per cent well informed), and 27 per cent of 35-44 year olds feel poorly informed (to 25 per cent who feel well informed).
While overall ‘interest rates’ are similar to the general public, older voters do report higher scores for being ‘very interested’, with 29 per cent of 65-74 year olds saying they are very interested, alongside 46 per cent of 75 year olds – potentially a strong indicator of who will vote on June 8.
BMG polling also shows that 60 per cent of Brits say they will ‘definitely’ vote on June 8 or have already voted by post, while a further 12 per cent identify as 8/9 out of 10 in terms of likelihood to vote on June 8. It suggests turnout could be in the mid-high 60s – similar to the 66 per cent we saw in 2015.
While a lower figure of 50 per cent of 18-24 year olds says they will definitely vote or have already voted by post, a further 15 per cent rank themselves as 8/9 out of 10 in terms of likelihood to vote – higher than the general average.
Darren Hughes, deputy chief executive of the Electoral Reform Society, said: “These findings show that far from voters being bored by the election, they are highly switched on and interested. The public care about this vote, and look set to take part in large numbers.
“It’s encouraging to see that the idea that young people are apathetic is a myth – 18-24 year olds are just as engaged as the rest of the public, with nearly two thirds saying they are interested.
“Moreover, of those who say they are very likely to vote, the figures are very similar between 18-24 year olds and the rest of the public – suggesting the democratic generation gap may not be as significant as it has been in the past.
“However, there are warning signs here in that most people do not feel well informed about the vote – something we hope is made up in this final week of campaigning. Parties and the media would do well to focus on the policies rather than personality politics or issues of process in this home strait.
“These findings give lie to the notion that voters are tired of democracy – they are following the vote and we could see high turnout next week.
“Given the rates of interest among 18-24 year olds, this could be the election where young people turn out in force.”