Less than one year after Barack Obama’s election, 24% of young Americans considered themselves to be politically active (fall 2009 poll). Twelve years later, we find the share of politically active Americans increased by half — and now 36% are politically active. The most politically active among this cohort are young Blacks (41% politically active).
Over the last five years, on a host of issues ranging from health care, to climate, immigration, poverty, and affirmative action--young Americans are increasingly more likely to favor government intervention. For example, we found:
- A 19-point increase in agreement with the statement “Qualified minorities should be given special preferences in hiring and education” (now 33%).
- An 18-point increase in agreement with the statement “Government should do more to curb climate change, even at the expense of economic growth” (now 55%).
- A 16-point increase since 2016 in agreement with “The government should spend more to reduce poverty” (now 61%).
- A 16-point increase in “Basic health insurance is a right for all people, and if someone has no means of paying for it, the government should provide it” (now 64%).
- An 8-point increase in agreement with “Recent immigration into this country has done more good than harm (now 37%).