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80% of US gamers plan to vote in 2016 - Survey

ESA-funded look at gamers' political leanings find more identify as conservative than liberal

The Entertainment Software Association wants to drive home the idea of gamers as a politically active demographic. Today the US industry trade group released findings from an Ipsos Media CT survey of more than 4,000 American adult gamers, emphasizing that 80 percent of them plan to vote in next November's presidential election.

The ESA said 79 percent of gamers voted in the 2012 presidential election, compared to 75 percent of non-gamers, according to a recent Reuters survey. Both numbers far outstrip the official figure, as the US Census Bureau reported only 61.8 percent of the eligible voting population actually cast a ballot in the 2012 election.

The ESA's survey also included some indication as to how gamers might vote. 48 percent of gamers self-identified as conservative, compared to 38 percent who considered themselves liberal. The remaining 14 percent were grouped under an "other" category. However, they were more balanced when asked about party affiliation, with 38 percent of the group going with Democrats, another 38 percent answering Republican or Tea Party, and 24 percent independent.

Respondents said the economy was the most important issue facing the company today, and only 41 percent said they were better off financially now than they were when the Democrats took control of the White House eight years ago. For gamers age 18-24, the second more important issue was race relations, while gamers as a whole considered terrorism the number two priority.

While 61 percent of gamers said there should be a more equitable distribution of wealth, 61 percent also wanted to solve the budget deficit through cutting programs and spending. Just 25 percent leaned toward higher taxes as a solution.

On energy and the environment, 76 percent of gamers believe that humans have contributed to global warming, and 67 percent support more investment in renewable energy.

"100 million gamers will vote next year," said ESA president and CEO Michael Gallagher. "Gamers are engaged, informed and hold strong opinions on critical issues. From both sides of the aisle, and in every state across the country, they will influence the course of our nation's future."

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Brendan Sinclair avatar
Brendan Sinclair: Brendan joined in 2012. Based in Toronto, Ontario, he was previously senior news editor at GameSpot.
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