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Current Population Survey, November 2012: Voting and Registration Supplement (ICPSR 36383)

Principal Investigator(s): United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of Census; United States Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics


This data collection is comprised of responses from two sets of survey questionnaires, the basic Current Population Survey (CPS) and a survey on the topic of voting and registration in the United States, which was administered as a supplement to the November 2012 CPS questionnaire.

The CPS, administered monthly, is a labor force survey providing current estimates of the economic status and activities of the population of the United States. Specifically, the CPS provides estimates of total employment (both farm and nonfarm), nonfarm self-employed persons, domestics, and unpaid helpers in nonfarm family enterprises, wage and salaried employees, and estimates of total unemployment. Data from the CPS are provided for the week prior to the survey.

The voting and registration supplement data are collected every two years to monitor trends in the voting and nonvoting behavior of United States citizens in terms of their different demographic and economic characteristics. The supplement was designed to be a proxy response supplement, meaning a single respondent could provide answers for all eligible household members. The supplement questions were asked of all persons who were both United States citizens and 18 years of age or older. The CPS instrument determined who was eligible for the voting and registration supplement through the use of check items that referred to basic CPS items, including age and citizenship.

Respondents were queried on whether they were registered to vote in the November 6, 2012 election, main reasons for not being registered to vote, main reasons for not voting, whether they voted in person or by mail, and method used to register to vote. Demographic variables include age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, marital status, veteran status, disability status, educational attainment, occupation, and income.

Series: Current Population Survey Series

Access Notes

  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions. Please log in so we can determine if you are with a member institution and have access to these data files.


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Study Description


United States Department of Commerce. Bureau of Census, and United States Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Current Population Survey, November 2012: Voting and Registration Supplement. ICPSR36383-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2016-07-01. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR36383.v1

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR36383.v1

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Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    demographic characteristics, employment, household composition, job change, job history, job loss, job opportunities, job search, labor force, military service, occupations, population characteristics, voter interest, voter registration, voter turnout, voters, voting behavior, wages and salaries

Smallest Geographic Unit:    City

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 2012-11

Date of Collection:   

  • 2012-11-11--2012-11-17

Unit of Observation:    Individuals within housing units

Universe:    All persons in the civilian non-institutional population of the United States living in households. A single respondent could provide answers for themselves or provide answers for all eligible household members, provided the respondent was a household member 15 years of age or older. The voting and registration questions were asked of all persons who were both U.S. citizens and 18 years of age or older.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Additional information on the Current Population Surveys can be found by visiting the Current Population Survey Web site.


Study Purpose:    To collect information on the employment situation, as well as demographic characteristics of people living in the United States.

Sample:    A multistage probability sample based on the 2000 census information used in identifying the primary sampling units (PSUs). For more detailed information regarding sample design, please refer to Attachment 2 in the Technical Documentation titled 'CPS Sample Design'.

Time Method:    Cross-sectional


The data is not weighted. However, the dataset contains the following weight variables that users may wish to apply for analyses:

  • HWHHWGT (Household Weight)
  • PWFMWGT (Family Weight)
  • PWLGWGT (Longitudinal Weight)
  • PWORWGT (Outgoing Rotation Weight)
  • PWSSWGT (Final Weight)
  • HWHHWGT (Veterans Weight)
  • PWCMPWGT (Composited Final Weight)

For more information on the data weights, please see Attachment 2 in the Technical Documentation.

Mode of Data Collection:    computer-assisted personal interview (CAPI), computer-assisted telephone interview (CATI)

Extent of Processing:   ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Created online analysis version with question text.


Original ICPSR Release:   2016-07-01

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