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Poll: Warren eclipses Biden for college vote

In the sharpest swing since we began tracking the Democratic race, Elizabeth Warren has sailed atop our Presidential Support Index. Rather than mounting an explosive surge, Warren has worked a steady ascent from about 6% in April to nearly 20% in September. Following closely behind are Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders.

Here are the big changes:

• Warren takes lead of college vote after steady rise from low single-digits in April

• Biden cedes ground to Warren after initial lead with college students

• Yang joins the top five candidates at 10%

A fascinating cross-tab:

  • While Biden has sunk slightly, he has maintained a solid hold on Independent and Republican students. 17% of Independents support him and 11% of Republicans support him

Main takeaways:

  • Warren's momentum has expanded into the college vote. While nothing has shifted drastically, Biden's early advantage seems to have faded. It is still too early to tell if Warren's lead will hold, but the clear message is that the college vote is still unsettled.

College Reaction/Axios September Presidential Support Index (Sept 23-24) | n=586 students 

  1. Warren:     19.5%  (+6 since July)

  2. Trump:     17.4% (+1)

  3. Sanders:    15.5% (-)

  4. Biden:      13.1% (-3)

  5. Yang:      10%  (+6)

  6. Buttigieg    6.5% (-4)

  7. O'Rourke    5.5% (-1)

  8. Harris       5.1% (-3)

  9. Gabbard    1.5% (-)

  10. Booker      1.4% (-)

  11. Castro     <1%

  12. Delaney <1%

  13. Klobuchar  <1%

  14. Messam <1%

  15. Sestak     <1%

  16. Steyer <1%

  17. Weld      <1%

  18. Williamson <1%


Data in this report are generated from a poll conducted on Sept. 23rd-24th, 2019. A total of 586 panelists participated in the poll.

College Reaction’s polling is conducted using a demographically-representative panel of college students from around the country. The surveys are administered via college e-mail address to ensure current enrollment in a four-year institution. The target population for the general population sample was students currently enrolled in accredited 4-year institutions in the US.

Respondents in this poll were randomly selected from a respondent database, which aims to mirror the broader college demographic from a racial, geographic and political standpoint. Results are weighted to mirror race and gender statistics of the college demographic as defined by the National Center for Education statistics.


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