He received 60 percent of the vote from people ages 18-29. The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement – CIRCLE – a youth research organization at Tufts University, said that early estimates show that 22 million to 23 million young Americans – or at least 49 percent – voted. CIRCLE director Peter Levine said turnout for young voters has increased over the last three elections – averaging what he called a "new normal" of about 50 percent – and making the once not-so-reliable voting segment now an “essential political bloc.”
The gay vote is not yet measured in exit polls. But a poll conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research said that 5 percent of voters self-identified as gay, lesbian and bisexual and more than three-quarters of them cast their ballots for Obama.
Obama’s support remained strong among a number of key constituencies, including African-American voters, nine out of 10 of whom backed Obama, and women, who broke 55-44 for Obama.
Now, after propelling Obama to victory, the lobbying begins and some groups warn that Democrats will need to keep their promises to keep the coalition viable beyond this election. These core constituencies want comprehensive immigration reform, equality for gays and lesbians, and climate change solutions.
“Our collective labor as a community has engaged marginalized voters and brought them into the political process – and now our collective labor will demand that President Obama use every bit of his power to help us – all of us – get equal,” said Felipe Sousa-Rodriguez, national field director for GetEQUAL, a national gay rights organization.
Franco Ordonez of the Washington Bureau contributed.