A new Reuters/Ipsos poll of 16,000 registered voters has some bad news for the Democrats: they’ve lost a significant percentage of millennials, particularly white millennials.
The survey found that voters ages 18 to 34 have soured on Democrats over the last two years, with their support for Democrats over Republicans in Congress dropping off by a total of 9%.
While Democrats maintain a solid lead over Republicans among the demographic, they no longer have majority support, with only 46% of millennials now saying they prefer Democrats. The extensive survey found that support for Republicans remained the same from two years ago at 28%, while support for Democrats fell from 55 to 46%.
“A growing share of voters between ages 18 and 34 years old said they were undecided, would support a third-party candidate or not vote at all,” Reuters notes.
The most notable shift away from Democrats occurred among white millennials (who, Reuters notes, made up two-thirds of all millennial votes in 2016). In the last election year, by a margin of 14%, white millennials favored Democrats over Republicans (47 – 33); but that sizable gap has “vanished,” says Reuters. The parties are now deadlocked at 39% each.
The shift among white male millennials was even more dramatic: they now favor Republicans over Democrats by 46 to 37%.
To make matters worse, millennials “increasingly say the Republican Party is a better steward of the economy,” Reuters reports.
To try to make sense of the shifts, Reuters spoke with CUNY political science professor Donald Green, who says that the younger generations are less likely to be “wedded to one party” and thus “easier to convince than, say, your 50- or 60-year-olds who don’t really change their minds very often.”