The new Harvard Institute of Politics Youth Poll found that voters age 18-29 plan to vote in numbers equaling the 2018 midterm record and they overwhelmingly support Democrats.
The Harvard Institute of Politics reported:
Forty percent (40%) of young Americans report that they will “definitely” vote in the upcoming midterms, matching the proportion of young Americans who said the same in the IOP’s fall 2018 survey. The number of young Americans likely to vote has increased four percentage points since spring 2022 Harvard IOP polling – and is 14 points higher than 2014 and 13 points higher than 2010 fall benchmarks. (In 2019, the U.S. Census noted that turnout among 18- to 29-year-olds increased from 20 percent in 2014 to 36 percent in 2018, the largest percentage point increase for any age group.)
Young Americans under 30 who live in battleground states (45%) are more likely to vote than those from traditional red (33%) or blue states (40%); this cycle’s battleground state residents are also more likely to vote than those from similar states in 2018 (38%).
By a nearly two-to-one margin, likely voters prefer Democratic control of Congress, 57% to 31% – 12% remain undecided.
Interestingly, three in five young voters say that their vote is a vote of support for their party, which means that they are less likely to be deterred or swayed by the negative ads that Republicans and Republican-leaning groups have been flooding the airwaves with.
If young people show up at 2018 levels, it makes it much more likely that Democrats will keep the Senate majority.
Intending to vote and actually voting are two very different concepts.
Young voters are legendarily difficult to capture in polling, so if young voters turn out in large numbers in battleground states, it could throw the perceptions caused by the polls into the dumpster.
The work for Democrats, it seems should be directed toward getting their voters to cast ballots.
There is no sign of a wave for either party.
The 2022 election is a base election, and the party that does the better job getting its voters to show up and vote are going to prevail.
The United States appears to be in the midst of a voter behavior change. More voters are treating midterms and off-year elections with the same attitude that they approach presidential elections.
For decades, the biggest problem that the Democratic Party has had is getting its voters to show up in non-presidential years. If Democrats start turning out to vote in presidential numbers for every election, it will permanently alter the balance of power and American politics for decades to come.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association
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