Friday, June 09, 2017

Young Britons Turn on May

The Conservative Party won the most seats in the UK election, but they do not have enough seats to form a majority government. The results have been a huge surprise to many people, including most of the polling companies. The results have not been such a surprise to those who have noticed the huge popularity of the opposition leader among young voters.

Jeremy Corbyn has not only proved very popular with young people he has also encouraged them to come out and vote in huge numbers. Last month The Times Higher Education released a Hexmap of Constituencies Showing Potential Student Impact. The map looks at census data on student numbers with data on each university’s own student population to assess how much influence students have in each constituency.

The map shows Cambridge as one constituency where students have a huge influence over the result. If we check the Cambridge result on the BBC's Election Map we see that Labour did indeed win the seat and with a +15.9% swing. Edinburgh South is another seat with a large student influence. Again Labour won the seat with a similar +15.9% in their favour. That trend appears to have been repeated throughout the UK in seats with large numbers of student numbers.

It wasn't just students who seem to have voted for Jeremy Corbyn in large numbers. Young people across the board appeared to have warmed to the Labour leader. Early analysis from turnout data suggests that there was over a 20% increase in the number of 18-24 year olds voting. The polls suggest that 63 per cent of 18 to 34-year-olds voted Labour and only 27 per cent voted Conservative.

It will be interesting to see if any election maps emerge over the next few days comparing age demographics in constituencies with the way those constituencies voted.

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