Alexandra Chadwick went to the polls in 2020 with the singular goal of ousting Donald J. Trump. A 22-year-old first time voter, she saw Joseph R. Biden Jr. as more of a safeguard than an inspiring political figure, someone who could stave off threats to abortion access, gun control and climate policy.
Two years later, as the Supreme Court has eroded federal protections on all three, Ms. Chadwick now sees President Biden and other Democratic leaders as lacking both the imagination and willpower to fight back. She points to a generational gap — one she once overlooked but now seems cavernous.
“How are you going to accurately lead your country if your mind is still stuck 50, 60 or 70 years ago?” Ms. Chadwick, a customer service representative in Rialto, Calif., said of the many septuagenarian leaders at the helm of her party. “It’s not the same, and people aren’t the same, and your old ideas aren’t going to work as well anymore.”
While voters across the spectrum express rising doubts about the country’s political leadership, few groups are as united in their discontent as the young.
A survey from The New York Times and Siena College found that just 1 percent of 18-to-29-year-olds strongly approve of the way Mr. Biden is handling his job. And 94 percent of Democrats under 30 said they wanted another candidate to run two years from now. Of all age groups, young voters were most likely to say they wouldn’t vote for either Mr. Biden or Mr. Trump in a hypothetical 2024 rematch. [Continue reading…]