Republican Donald Trump is heading toward the worst showing ever among young voters, according to a new USA Today/Rock the Vote Poll released on Sunday.
USA Today reported that Democrat Hillary Clinton leads Trump 56 percent to 20 percent among those under 35 years old. If other candidates are added to the survey, Clinton would win 50 percent, Trump 18 percent, Libertarian Gary Johnson 11 percent and Green Party nominee Jill Stein 4 percent.
The only worry for Clinton, who was trounced herself in the Democratic parties by young voters who favored Sen. Bernie Sanders 71 percent to 28 percent, is that enthusiasm to vote at all has dipped since March. At that time, when Sanders was still in the race, the percentage of young voters seen as most likely to vote was at 76 percent, and that number has now dropped to 72 percent.
The Washington Post reported that in a series of interviews it conducted with young voters across the nation, the mood among that sector has changed significantly from recent elections in the intense disgust they have for both major candidates, so much so that the paper said it "is pushing many beyond disillusionment and toward apathy."
The worst showing ever among young voters is considered to be for Republican Richard Nixon, who received 32 percent in the 1972 election, according to USA Today.
If Trump’s historically bad showing among young voters holds on election day, it could have long-range implications, because it would be the first time since such data became available in 1952 that the Democrats would have won double digit victories among young voters for three straight presidential elections.
And this comes at a time when the number of Millennials in the U.S. is estimated at 75.4 million and is now larger than the members of the Baby Boom generation, who are now between the ages of 51 and 69.
As recently as the 1984 and 1988 elections, Republicans held a double digit advantage among young voters, with the two parties about evenly split among this sector in the 2000 race.
Other findings from the poll include:
- 50 percent of voters under 35 support the Democratic Party, 20 percent the Republican, and 17 percent are Independents.
- At least 50 percent of young voters said Trump seemed less presidential, less credible and less trustworthy after the Republican National Convention, while a more than a two-to-one margin said he seemed less human.
- After the Democratic National conventions, 39 percent to 27 percent said Clinton seemed more rather than less presidential, and 35 percent to 23 percent said she appeared more human. On the question of Clinton being more or less trustworthy, young people were split at 31 percent .
- 57 percent of young Clinton supporters say they back her because she has the right experience to lead, while only 22 percent of Trump supporters say that of him.
- 54 percent of Trump supporters say one of the main reasons they back him is to keep Clinton out of the White House, while 51 percent of Clinton supporters say the same about preventing Trump from becoming president.
The online poll of 1,539 adults age 18-34 was taken by Ipsos Public Affairs August 5-10. It has a credibility interval, akin to the margin of error, of 4.6.
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