As everyone's noting, the percentage of young voters dropped off substantially from 2008. What should be noted: young voter turnout is never high in off-off year elections. That's not where Creigh Deeds's problems originated from. Look at his standing among independents. True, independents tend to lean toward the out-party in these elections, but Deeds had a foothold with them before the summer. Then the summer happened. The summer: GM bailed out. Unemployment spikes. Talk in Washington of a trillion dollar health care bill. Suddenly, independent men, in particular, began to orient themselves toward the basic Republican message: lower taxes, less government intervention, less spending. Waiting to see the geographic cross-tabs, but I'm betting that, where there's a comparison to be made, you'll find that Deeds did much worse among suburban (Richmond and DC) independents, particularly men, particularly those over 45.
Marc Ambinder is an Atlantic contributing editor. He is also a senior contributor at Defense One, a contributing editor at GQ, and a regular contributor at The Week.