A new survey reveals that college students — the vast majority of them in Generation Z (born after 1996) — are casting their decision in the 2020 elections partly based on how each candidate handles racial and ethnic inequality as well as the coronavirus pandemic.
Out of 1,002 college students aged 18 to 23 polled by college planning website BestColleges between September 10 and 15, about 62% said the issues they considered important changed this year.
And 40% of the respondents — college students across the political spectrum — placed both civil rights and coronavirus as to the most important issues during this election.
While racial inequality was a top issue for students who were left-leaning, at 52%, only 17% of students identifying themselves with the Republican party considered it a major point.
The economy, which includes employment and the jobs environment, ranked as the third most important issue to Gen Z, followed by healthcare and education. Climate change was also noted by 22% of respondents to be a major issue they were concerned about.
“We certainly are seeing a lot of first-time voters in this age group,” Melissa Venable, a BestColleges advisor, told Yahoo Finance Live (video above). “They're registered because they can for the first time and vote for the presidential election.”
“This is a generation that's been known, from a much younger age, as being politically active in their community and engaged in things around civics,” Venable noted.
Aarthi is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @aarthiswami.