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Young Voters Planning To Turn Out At 2008 Levels As Blue Wave Builds Around Biden

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In another troubling sign for Donald Trump’s reelection campaign, new data shows that Former Vice President Joe Biden is polling much better among young voters than Hillary Clinton did four years ago.

According to a poll from the Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics, 60 percent of likely voters in the 18-to-29 age range plan to support Biden while just 27 percent back Trump.

As Greg Sargent of the Washington Post pointed out

, “That’s significantly better than the 49 percent that Hillary Clinton got in this poll in 2016.”

Not only is Biden winning a higher share of 18-to-29 support than the Democratic nominee four years ago, but the number of young Americans who plan to vote in this presidential election matches 2008 levels.

More from Sargent:

But that’s not all. The poll also finds that an astonishing 63 percent of respondents say they will “definitely be voting,” compared to 47 percent in the 2016 version of this poll.

That matches 2008 levels. The 2008 version of this poll found that among a somewhat smaller segment of young voters, approximately the same percentage said they’d definitely be voting.

While this comparison between the two subsets isn’t perfect, it nonetheless indicates that it’s reasonable to posit that 18- to 29-year-olds might post 2008-level turnout this time, according to Chase Harrison, the acting director of the Institute of Politics poll.

“I would assume that we should see actual turnout among 18-to-29 year-olds similar to actual turnout in 2008,” Harrison told me. “Young voters care about this election.” If so, that would be striking.

The data indicates that the criticism of Biden during the Democratic primary – that he wouldn’t be able to generate enthusiasm among young voters – was off-base.

Biden is also winning over older voters

On the other end of the age spectrum, Donald Trump’s luck isn’t getting any better as polling also shows Joe Biden winning over older Americans, too.


As CNN’s Harry Enten noted over the weekend, “If the current polls hold, Biden’s putting in the strongest performance for a Democrat among seniors in a generation.”

“A look at the live interview polls since August that meet CNN’s standards shows Biden with an eight point advantage with seniors,” Enten pointed out. In 2016, Trump beat Hillary Clinton among these voters.

If Joe Biden is able to run up the score among younger voters and remain competitive or ahead among seniors, it will be hard – if not impossible – for Donald Trump to win a second term.


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