IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Here's a comprehensive look at how younger voters are breaking in 2020

First Read is your briefing from "Meet the Press" and the NBC Political Unit on the day's most important political stories and why they matter.
Image: Georgia Primary Election
People wait in line to vote in Georgia's Primary Election on June 9, 2020 in Atlanta.Elijah Nouvelage / Getty Images

WASHINGTON — Young voters are backing Joe Biden over President Trump by 20 points or more.

They’re down on Trump’s job performance. They’re not fans of Biden, either.

And maybe most revealing of all, these voters aren’t monolithic, with men and white younger voters much more supportive of Trump than women and younger voters of color.

These are the finding of a Quibi and NBC News analysis of more than 2,000 young voters surveyed in the NBC News/Wall Street Journal polls from January through August of this year.

Millennial voters (ages 24-39) are backing Biden over Trump by a 55 percent-to-35 percent margin, and Gen Z voters (ages 18-23) are supporting the Democrat, 57 percent to 33 percent.

Only 38 percent of millennials and 34 percent of Gen Zers approve of Trump’s job performance (versus 45 percent of all voters in the aggregated NBC/WSJ polls).

Biden’s net fav/unfav rating among millennials is -12 (compared with -25 for Trump), and the former vice president’s rating among Gen Zers is -15 (versus -32 for Trump).

But broken down by gender, younger women are backing Biden over Trump by 30 to 40 points, while younger men are essentially split.

And broken down by race, young voters of color are breaking big for Biden, but white young voters are slightly backing the Democrat over Trump.

One other thing: Gen Z and millennial voters are much more diverse than other generations.

“Overall, of the thousands of respondents surveyed in the NBC/Wall Street Journal poll so far this year, about one-quarter have been voters of color,” one of us writes. “But among the youngest cohort, Gen Z, a much larger share — 40 percent — are people of color.”

Biden warned about Trump overruling his scientists. And then Trump did exactly that

In a speech on vaccines yesterday, Joe Biden said, "I trust vaccines, I trust scientists, but I don’t trust Donald Trump.”

Then, just hours later, President Trump contradicted Centers for Disease Control head Robert Redfield, who testified before Congress that a vaccine most likely wouldn’t be ready until November or December, with availability to the public not until the summer of 2021.

“I think he made a mistake when he said that. It’s just incorrect information. And I called him, and he didn’t tell me that, and I think he got the message maybe confused,” Trump said.

The president added, “No, we’re ready to go immediately as the vaccine is announced, and it could be announced in October. It could be announced a little bit after October. But once we go, we’re ready.”

Every day that Trump elevates the virus – and makes his scientists the opponent — is a good day for Joe Biden.

By the way, this week’s NBC News|SurveyMonkey poll found just 26 percent of Americans trusting Trump on a vaccine, versus 52 percent who don’t trust him.

Data Download: The numbers you need to know today

6,663,464: The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States, per the most recent data from NBC News and health officials. (That’s 47,118 more than yesterday morning.)

198,047: The number of deaths in the United States from the virus so far. (That’s 1,305 more than yesterday morning.)

88.57 million: The number of coronavirus tests that have been administered in the United States so far, according to researchers at The COVID Tracking Project.

Seven percent: The share of first class mail that was delayed by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s changes to USPS, according to a Senate Democratic report.

52 percent to 46 percent: Biden’s lead among likely voters in Wisconsin, according to a new Washington Post-ABC poll.

Lowering the Barr

There was a firehose of news from — and about — Attorney General William Barr on Wednesday night.

The New York Times reported that Barr told prosecutors last week that “they should consider charging rioters and others who had committed violent crimes at protests in recent months with sedition.”

The paper also said Barr told prosecutors to see if they could bring criminal charges against Seattle’s mayor (!!!) ”for allowing some residents to establish a police-free protest zone near the city’s downtown.”

Then, at a speech last night, Barr attacked career prosecutors in his own department, equating some of them to preschoolers and "headhunters," NBC’s Pete Williams writes.

And in the same talk, he said this about stay-at-home orders to combat the coronavirus: "Putting national lockdown, stay at home orders is like house arrest. Other than slavery, which was a different kind of restraint, this is the greatest intrusion on civil liberties in American history. "

Tweet of the day

2020 Vision: Blue state deaths vs. red state ones

President Trump said yesterday that without “blue states,” the coronavirus death toll would be far lower.

“If you take the blue states out, we’re at a level that I don’t think anybody in the world would be at. We’re really at a very low level — but some of the states, they were blue states and blue state-managed. And by the way, we’d recommend they open up their states,” Trump said.

On the campaign trail today

Joe Biden holds a town hall with CNN at 8:00 p.m. ET from Scranton, Pa. Kamala Harris stumps in Philadelphia.

Ad Watch from Ben Kamisar

Today’s Ad Watch heads out of the Lower 48 and to the Last Frontier, where an interesting Senate race is shaping up between Republican Sen. Dan Sullivan and independent Al Gross.

This week, Alaska tweaked how it handles independent candidates on its ballots, a move that will end up listing Gross as a Democrat because he won that party’s nomination (Gross isn’t a registered Democrat, but has been backed by the state party and the DSCC).

That’s not how the state handled things in 2018, when independent candidates were listed as such, so the move has drawn criticism from independent candidates and Democrats. Independent House candidate Alyse Galvin (who also won the Democratic nomination) is suing, and the Anchorage Daily News says a ruling is expected Thursday.

That decision could be significant, as the dynamic plays into the battle already brewing between Gross and Sullivan. Republicans have been attempting to wrest the independent label from Gross on the airwaves, running ads claiming he’s just another liberal.

But Gross has been fighting back against that framing, particularly in a recent ad where he criticizes liberal ideas like the Green New Deal and Medicare for All.

The Lid: Shot, chaser

Don’t miss the pod from yesterday, when we did a deep dive into what Americans are saying about their faith in a coronavirus vaccine. (Spoiler: It’s not going great.)

ICYMI: What else is happening in the world

A whistleblower says that federal and military officials tried to obtain a sound cannon or a type of heat ray to disperse protesters at Lafayette Square.

Michael Caputo is taking a leave of absence from HHS after a Facebook rant that floated CDC conspiracy theories.

Some Republicans want a quixotic vote to oust Pelosi.

Is Trump’s economic pitch landing with some Latinos?

Democrats continue to warn that Biden may not be doing enough on the trail to excite voters.