|Obama Youth Members and the President|
While the president still carries this group, his approval of has fallen to 46% among 18-29 year-olds,, according to a new poll from Harvard University.
Now remember, President Obama carried this group by 66% to 32% in the 2008 election. This means he is "minus 20 points" with this crucial voting group.
The Harvard survey of 2,028 young voters was taken from Nov. 23-Dec. 3, and showed that 51% disapproved of the job the president was doing. Obama's approval was down 9 percentage points since Harvard's last survey of this age group in February.
Obama's biggest drop this year was among young Hispanics and college students. Only 35% of white 18-29 year olds approve of the president's job performance; 83% of blacks and 52% of Hispanics did. Obama won 18-29 year-olds by more than 2-1 over Republican John McCain in 2008.
The young have been hit especially hard during Obama’s term. The unemployment rate for those 20 to 24 is at 14 percent, five points above the national average. And the percent of young voters identifying as Democratic has dropped eight points since 2008.
You could make a very strong case that the 18-29 year olds provided Obama with the margin of victory in 2008.
In 2008 Mr. Obama won the 18-to-29 age group by the largest margin by any presidential candidate among any age group in any election since 1972. By contrast, Mr. Obama was even with Sen. John McCain among voters aged 45 to 64, and lost among those 65 and over. Moreover, those younger voters made up an unusually large 18 percent of the electorate.
During the 2010 midterms, the youth vote dropped to 11 percent of the electorate, support for Democrats dropped to 57 percent, and the GOP took control of the House.
The Harvard survey, which has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.2 percentage points, had other important key findings:
|Obama was the overwhelming choice of young voters in 2008|
- Only 12% think the country is going in the right direction, down 8 points since February, and down 25 points since November 2009.
- Approval of Obama's handling of the economy is at 32%, down 10 points since February. And 20% of the 18-29 year-olds surveyed said they were looking for work.
- Younger Americans are cool to both the Tea Party (11% approval) and the Occupy Wall Street movements (21%).