6 things to know about Gen Z, politics and 2024

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1) Gen Z is driven by anti-Trump backlash

While all registered voters are almost split down the middle on Trump’s performance in office, Gen Z has a much dimmer view of the president, with about two thirds of respondents disapproving of his performance.

If the election were held today, only a quarter of Gen Zers would vote for Trump (half would go to Joe Biden), compared with 42 percent of registered voters.

And even though Gen Z is twice as likely to vote for Biden over Trump, a significant chunk is doing so out of a backlash to the president. Almost half of Gen Z respondents to our poll are voting against Trump, rather than for Biden.


2) Gen Z is still not fully sold on Biden/the Dems

Thirty-eight percent of Gen Z respondents to our poll identified as liberal — more than double the percentage of conservative Gen Zers. They’re also more left-of-center than registered voters.

But despite this significant leftward bend, Gen Zers are no more likely to identify as Democrats than registered voters, instead choosing to buck the two-party system and go independent.

Their hesitation to identify as Democratic is reflected in their approval ratings of both Biden and congressional Democrats, which are slightly less favorable than those of registered voters. And, as charts showed earlier, many of them are voting for Biden because of anti-Trump sentiment.


3) Gen Z is less certain to vote

Just under half of Gen Z respondents said they were “absolutely certain” to vote in November, compared with nearly 80 percent of registered voters. While they make up one-tenth of the electorate this year, separate Morning Consult intelligence finds that they’re only 4 percent of likely voters.

Gen Zers were also much less likely than registered voters to deny they didn’t like either of the two presidential candidates to vote.


4) Gen Z is less confident about voting

First-time voters already face significant barriers to understanding and participating in the electoral process. Gen Z has to figure it out during a pandemic election, which puts a focus on vote-by-mail. Just over a third of Gen Z poll respondents feel very confident about their ability to vote by mail.

The percentage of Gen Zers who were very confident they could vote in person was 27 points lower than registered voters who said the same.

Young people are less likely than registered voters to consider voting impactful, or the end-all and be-all of civic participation. And despite gaps on the impact of voting, Gen Zers are still almost as likely to believe they can affect politics and public affairs.


5) Gen Z is highly supportive of protests

With the widespread uprising against police brutality, Gen Z is more supportive of protests and protesters, while registered voters are more likely to support the police.

Gen Zers are also much less likely than registered voters to think that Black Lives Matter protests, specifically, are “too violent.”

And while Gen Z respondents were less likely to think their vote mattered in comparison with registered voters, they were more likely to think that protesting is a very effective way to impact politics and public affairs, again signaling disillusionment with “politics as usual.”


6) Gen Z gets news mainly from socials

Unsurprisingly, the most digitally native generation gets its election news more from social media platforms than TV news and newspapers. But Facebook still ranks highly as a source of news for Gen Z respondents despite its falling popularity among the age group. TV, which is by far the most popular news source for registered voters, barely made the top 5 for Gen Z.

Gen Z respondents and registered voters were similar in their confidence at discerning “fake news.” Thirty-five percent of Gen Zers said they were very confident, compared with 34 percent of registered voters. Still, the way Gen Z interacts with the information space is vastly different from the “fake news” stories their parents were dealing with in 2016.


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