turning tide

Young white voters are having a surprising change of heart about the election in a new survey

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Two weeks away from the election, more young white people say they’ll vote for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump than ever before, according to a survey released today.

The GenForward monthly survey found that among white youth aged 18–30, 35% said they support Clinton, compared to 21% who say they support Trump. That’s a significant change from the September survey, which found that support from young white people was evenly split between Clinton and Trump, at 27% each.

Young white voters appear to be breaking with tradition: As The Washington Post wrote last month, young white voters tend to vote more in line with white people of all ages (so generally more conservative) than with other, non-white young people in their age group (who tend to vote more liberal).

The survey, which included 1,832 young people aged 18–30, was conducted online and over the phone between October 1–14 by the Black Youth Project at the University of Chicago and the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

“In fact, this is the highest level of support among white youth for Hillary Clinton that we have recorded since our surveys were first in the field in June,” the report authors write. “The events of the past month appear to have shifted young white voters’ support for Hillary Clinton, with most of her gains coming at the expense of Donald Trump.”

The events the authors are referring to include allegations of sexual harassment and assault leveled at Trump by several women, and one incident in which former Miss Universe Alicia Machado told reporters Trump called her “Miss Piggy” after she had gained weight. The survey found that 56% of young white people who said they were Trump supporters were less likely to vote for him after hearing about these comments and allegations.

Clinton has the same level of support among young people (60%) that Barack Obama had before his re-election in 2012, the survey found. But her support base is less diverse than Obama’s was–and her support among Latinx youth (63%) is noticeably lower than the support she has from black (80%) and Asian American (74%) youth.

“While Latino/a youth were central to the Obama coalition in 2008 and 2012, when 76% and 74% of Latino/a voters, respectively, voted for Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton is struggling to make in-roads with this critical group of young people,” the report authors write. “Latino/a Millennials simply do not support Hillary Clinton at the same rate as other youth of color.”