Election 2016

Most Young Adults Say Trump Presidency Is Illegitimate

A new poll finds that younger adults don't think highly of this administration.

Photo Credit: Flicker / Gage Skidmore

Two months into his presidential term, Donald Trump has failed to convince younger adults that he’s a real leader. That’s according to a new poll that shows the majority of young adults—57 percent of those aged 18 to 30—say they don’t view Trump’s presidency as legitimate. Young adults of color are especially skeptical of Trump as commander-in-chief, with the majority of blacks, Asians and Latino/as reporting that Trump’s presidency is illegitimate. White young adults were the only group polled that overwhelmingly reported they see Trump as a viable leader, but most of them also reported dissatisfaction with the job he’s done so far.

The GenForward survey found that among young adults in the U.S., just 25 percent of African Americans, 36 percent of Asians and 28 percent of Latino/as regard the president as legitimate. Compare that with a majority of young whites, 53 percent, who say that Trump is a bona fide U.S. president. Majority disapproval of Trump’s record in office thus far was true across racial categories, with 72 percent of Latino/as, 71 percent of African Americans, 69 percent of Asian Americans, and 55 percent of young white adults giving the president’s performance a thumbs down.

A few other notable stats from the poll:

  • "Young adults express considerable concern about Donald Trump’s relations with Russia. Young people of color are especially worried. For example, 54% of Asian Americans, 53% of Latino/as, and 49% of African Americans believe that the 2016 election was hampered by the Russians. Only 39% of whites share this view."
  • "Large numbers of millennials report having been politically active during the first 50 days of the Trump administration. Political engagement has taken place largely online and in opposition to, rather than in support of, President Trump. For example, most contacts with public officials (61% among African Americans, 65% of Asian Americans, 59% of Latino/as, and 62% of whites) have been to express opposition to President Trump and his policies."
  • "There continue to be large differences across race and ethnicity in perceptions about the most important problems in America. For example, young people of color list racism as one of the three most important problems in the country, but this issue is not one of the top three for young whites."
  • "Health care and immigration are among the other top issues listed by millennials, suggesting a response to Trump’s current policy agenda."

A Gallup poll released Monday morning showed that Trump continues to break records across all age groups with his historic unpopularity. The Huffington Post reports that Trump’s job approval has fallen to an abysmal 37 percent, “lower than any other president at this point in his first term since Gallup started tracking the numbers 72 years ago in 1945.”

Kali Holloway is a senior writer and the associate editor of media and culture at AlterNet.

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