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Youth Poll Results From California’s Key Congressional Districts



Youth plan to vote in the 2022 general election and support progressive positions on issues

Courage California partnered with Data for Social Good, Communities for a New California, Inland Empire United, and OC Action to conduct polls of over 2,700 registered voters in six key battleground congressional districts: 13, 21, 22, 27, 41, and 45. Ten percent of poll respondents (274) were registered voters between 18-29 years old. 

The majority of youth voters are planning to vote in the general election but are not paying attention to the election.

Among youth voters, only 26% are paying a great deal or a lot of attention to the election, 31% are a moderate amount, and 43% a little or not at all. At present, 78% of youth voters are planning on voting in the November 8 general election, 6% are not, and 16% don’t know. A majority plan on voting by mail (63%) over voting at the polls on Election Day (20%) or voting early in person (7%), and 10% have not decided how they will vote. 

Jobs and the economy is the top issue for youth voters when considering which candidate to support in congressional races because of inflation, and healthcare, abortion and reproductive rights, and housing costs are also of importance. 

The top issues that youth voters care about are jobs and the economy (21%), healthcare (17%), abortion and reproductive rights (17%), and housing costs (17%). Of those who chose jobs and the economy, 62% did because of inflation. Of the young voters who chose health care, 69% did because they consider health care a human right. Of those who chose abortion and reproductive rights, 48% did because they believe in body autonomy. 

The overwhelming majority of youth voters will vote Yes on Prop 1, and youth voters will likely vote Yes on Prop 30. 

Youth voters overwhelmingly support Yes on Prop 1 (76%), with little opposition (13%) to the statewide ballot measure. They also support Yes on Prop 30 (54%), with 21% uncertain on how they will vote on the proposition. 

Community leaders are seen as the voices youth voters will listen to most when thinking about who to vote for. 

Our poll found that 36% youth leaders see community leaders as the voices they are most likely to listen to when thinking about who to vote for, followed closely by community organizations, 32%. There was much less trust in elected officials (19%), business people (9%), and celebrities and influencers (4%). 

The majority of youth voters trust their own online research for information. 

Youth voters rank online research as the most trustworthy source for information (63%). Social media (8%), parents and family (7%), print/radio/TV/podcast (6%), and political ads (3%) were considered much less trustworthy.  

Youth voters identify more as Democrats, and are also concerned about the influence of corporations and the wealthy in the Democratic and Republican parties. 

Youth voters identify as Democrats at a much higher rate than any other age group (42%, +16% compared to voters 46-54, +14% more than 55-65, and +12% more than 66+), while 40% identify No Party Preference or Independent and 15% as Republican. Of the youth voters who identify as NPP or Independent, 44% believe that corporations and the wealthy have too much influence in the party, and 52% also plan on staying that way because it makes the major parties have to earn their vote. 

About this poll

Data for Social Good conducted the poll for Courage California, Communities for a New California, IE United, and OC Action from September 1-22, 2022. The poll was administered online in English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Tagalog, and Vietnamese. We polled 2,712 registered voters, intentionally oversampling from demographic communities that have seen higher rates of growth in the last decade, including voters of color.

Courage California, formerly Courage Campaign, works to unite communities organizing for progressive change, fight the forces of corruption, and hold our representatives to account in order to ensure that California’s elected officials act with courage. Our community of members envision California as a model of progressive, equitable, and truly representative democracy that sets the standard for our country.


Angela Chavez