Poll: Biden support drops dramatically among young men

David Lauter, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Political News

Now, however, a significant gender gap has emerged, the Harvard poll shows.

Young men and women both moved away from the Democrats in the first few years of Biden’s tenure. But in 2023, women’s identification as Democrats shot back up and now sits slightly higher than 2020.

The poll can’t say why that happened, but the turnaround came after the Supreme Court’s decision in June 2022 to overturn Roe vs. Wade, the decision that for nearly half a century had guaranteed abortion rights in the U.S.

Young men, by contrast, have continued to move away from the Democrats.

Four years ago, young men who identified as Democrats outnumbered young Republicans by 22 points. Now, the two parties are nearly at parity among young men — just a three-point Democratic edge.

The greater conservatism of young men, especially those 18-24, appears to reflect their economic concerns, said Kritika Nagappa, another of the Harvard students involved in the poll.

Young men still take liberal positions on some major issues, such as health care, she noted.

But the poll found a shift on another major issue: climate change. In 2020, 60% of young men said that the “government should do more to curb climate change, even at the expense of economic growth.” Among today’s cohort of young men, 47% take that view.


Among women, there has been no significant shift.

Young people tuning in

Last year, the Harvard poll found that many young people had tuned out politics. That’s changed.

There’s been a “huge uptick” in the level of engagement that young people show now that the presidential race has gelled, said Jordan Schwartz, a third of the student leaders of the poll.

On questions such as whether it matters who is the president or whether politics is relevant to their lives, young people show a level of interest that is roughly similar to what the poll found four years ago.

“Young people are going to vote when they see their votes making a tangible difference,” said Cacodcar.

In a close election, as this one seems likely to be, that difference could be about as tangible as it gets.

©2024 Los Angeles Times. Visit at latimes.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.


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