FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, September 21, 2020
Significant findings show dramatic shift to in-person voting with 64% planning to vote early
WASHINGTON – The Alliance for Youth Action in collaboration with Civiqs released the fourth in a series of five monthly polls that will track change in youth voter sentiment as it relates to voter enthusiasm, campaign contact, and issue priorities every month leading up to the election.
The poll found that the Biden campaign has improved his appeal and outreach to young voters; for the third consecutive month, the coronavirus pandemic is the most important issue for the 2020 presidential election among young Democrats and Democratic-leaning Independents in ten key swing states; increasing taxes on corporations and the wealthy is is viewed as the top way to address the U.S. economy; and more young persuadable voters in battleground states plan to vote in person than last month.
“The increased contact numbers by the Biden campaign with young persuadable voters is both overdue and a good sign. It could be part of why we see increased Biden favorability with this demographic,” said Sarah Audelo, Executive Director of Alliance for Youth Action. “However, Vice President Biden has a lot more to do to reach Latinx youth in particular. With about 40 percent of eligible Latinx voters between the ages of 18 and 35, it is integral that the Biden campaign have a strategy to reach more Latinx youth in battleground states.”
“With concerns about White House interference with the United States Postal Service making national headlines, young Democrats and Democratic-leaning Independents in battleground states are increasingly likely to vote in person this year, rather than by mail,” said Drew Linzer, Director of Civiqs. “Still, the vast majority of in-person voters plan to do so early — alleviating the focus on Election Day.”
Here are the key findings of the survey from the Alliance for Youth Action and Civiqs:
1. Vice President Biden has improved his appeal to young persuadable voters in battleground states. There are many things that could be attributing to Biden’s favorability increasing among young persuadable voters including the pick of Senator Kamala Harris as his running mate and his increased outreach to young persuadable voters. Still, the Biden campaign has more to do to reach young Latinx and Democratic-leaning Independent persuadable voters in battleground states.
- Where 61% had a very or somewhat favorable view of Biden in August, that number increased to 68% in September.
- 30% hold a very favorable view of Biden up from 23% in August.
- The very favorable numbers of Biden are up nearly 10 points for young white persuadable voters.
- The selection of Senator Kamala Harris as Biden’s running mate has been positively received.
- 40% say that the choice makes them more likely to vote for Biden, compared to just 12% saying it makes them less likely to support him.
- Overall, 24% say that the choice makes them much more likely to vote for Biden. This increases to 35% of Black youth and 25% of Latinx youth.
- Biden is now reaching out to more young persuadable voters in battleground states.
- Over two-thirds (68%) of young swing state progressives have been contacted by the Biden campaign in the past month, an eight point increase from August.
- The Biden campaign has a lot of ground to make up with young Latinx voters as well as young Democratic-leaning Independents.
- 38% of young Latinx voters report not being contacted by the Biden campaign, compared to 31% of young white voters and 29% of young Black voters.
- Also, 41% of young Democratic-leaning Independents report not being contacted by the Biden campaign, compared to only about a quarter (26%) of young Democrats not being contacted.
2. The Trump campaign hasn’t given up on trying to persuade voters who would likely support Biden. Trump continues to bombard young persuadable voters, especially Gen Z, in battleground states with digital ads.
- Over half (51%) of young persuadable voters report also being contacted by the Trump campaign – a four point increase from last month.
- Trump is particularly reaching out to Gen-Zers as well as young Latinx and white men on digital.
- The Trump campaign continues to rely predominantly on digital advertising, reaching 43% of young Democrats and Democratic-leaning Independents aged 18-25.
- Trump is reaching nearly a third (31%) of young Latinx men with digital ads compared to only 17% of young Latinx women, which is similar to the outreach numbers for white men and women.
3. The coronavirus is the top issue for young persuadable voters for the third consecutive month. When considering how coronavirus has impacted their life, young people are now more concerned with economic factors more than health factors.
- Particularly for young persuadable voters of color, the threat of losing their job has overtaken worries about their parents’ health as the top concern.
- 32% of young Black persuadable voters in battleground states are worried about losing their job as their top concern about how the coronavirus has impacted their life. In August, this was their third concern after the health of their parents and their own health.
- Losing their job, hours, and income has been a top concern for Latinx youth since August. This month, 28% of Latinx are concerned with losing their jobs due to coronavirus.
- Overall, the most important issues remain unchanged from August: coronavirus, affordable healthcare, and ending systemic racism and discrimination.
- About half of those interviewed (48%) rank affordable healthcare as one of their top three priorities in the upcoming election. The second most shared top-three concern is coronavirus (45%), followed by ending systemic racism (44%).
4. When asked how to best address the economy, many young persuadable voters view increasing taxes on corporations and the wealthy as the most important change they would make to the U.S. economy.
- Nearly half (45%) of young Democrats and Democratic-leaning Independents in battleground states say that increasing taxes on corporations and the wealthy is the most important change they would make to the U.S. economy. This is across all socio-economic levels for this group.
- Many are also interested in raising the minimum wage to $15/hour and cancelling rent payments during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Fully 82% of young swing state progressives chose increasing taxes as one of their top three priorities, followed by raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour (62%) and cancelling rent during COVID-19 (32%).
- For 21% of young Black persuadable voters in battleground states, reparations was the most important way to address the economy.
5. More young persuadable voters in battleground states plan to vote in person than last month.
- After concerns about potential White House interference with the United States Postal Service made national headlines, young Democrats and Democratic-leaning Independents are reporting they will opt into in-person voting with the majority planning to vote during early voting when possible.
- In August, a plurality (46%) of young swing state progressives were planning to vote by mail and 36% planned to vote in person. This month, these percentages have nearly reversed. Now, nearly half (48%) are planning to vote in person. Of those planning to vote in person, 64% plan to go during early voting.
- Young Black and Latinx voters plan to vote in person and do it early.
- Young Black persuadable voters remain the most likely to vote in person: 57% plan to vote in person, and 34% plan to vote by mail.
- In August, 47% of young Black persuadable voters planned to vote in person.
- We see the biggest increase among young Latinx persuadable voters who say they plan to vote in person. This month, 53% of young Latinx persuadable voters plan to vote in person, and 35% plan to vote by mail.
- In August, just 40% of young Latinx persuadable voters planned to vote in person.
- Over half (54%) of young Latinx voters and 51% of young Black voters intend to go to the polls during early voting, compared to 29% of white voters.
- Overall, 39% intend to early vote, 36% expect to vote by mail, 22% plan to vote on Election Day.
- More than half (57%) of young swing-state progressives have been contacted by local government, candidate campaigns, or local organizations with information on how to vote. In Florida, 65% report receiving information about voting, compared to 35% in Texas.
See more poll findings here.
Civiqs interviewed 933 Democrats and Democratic-leaning Independents aged 18-39 in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Minnesota, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Wisconsin from September 8-12, 2020. The survey was conducted online, among selected members of the Civiqs research panel. Sampled individuals were emailed by Civiqs and responded using a personalized link to the survey at civiqs.com. The survey results are weighted by age, race, gender, education, party identification, and state to be representative of the population of registered Democrats and Democratic-leaning Independents aged 18-39 in the ten states. The survey has a margin of error of ±3.7% at the 95% confidence level, accounting for the weighting design effect. More information about Civiqs can be found online at civiqs.com/methodology.