Although more people voted than ever before, the actual voting rate in the 1976 Presidential election was lower than in any Presidential election since 1948. The ratio of official votes cast for President to the voting age population was 54 percent, down from 55 percent in 1972 and a high of 63 percent in 1960.
This report presents findings on the social and demographic characteristics of the civilian noninstitutional population of voting age in the 1976 election from the Current Population Survey (CPS) conducted by the Bureau of the Census. (Preliminary results were published in P-20, No. 304.) Comparisons of reported voter turnout are made with the first CPS survey on voting in 1964 and with the previous Presidential election of 1972.
The low official turnout for 1976 is also reflected in resuits of the CPS. Voter participation in 1976, as reported by the survey, was around 4 percentage points below the 1972 Presidential election and 10 points below the election of 1964.