Almost twice as many young women describe themselves as liberal than young men, although the trend is worsening

A recent analysis of Gallup Poll data by the American Enterprise Institute’s Survey Center on American Life (SCAL) found that 44% of young women ages 18-29 identified themselves as liberal in 2021, while only 25% did. of young men did . The delta between left-leaning identification of the two sexes is the largest recorded in 24 years of survey and indicates a significant left-leaning trend among young women.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, less than 30% of women identified themselves as liberal. However, after this ideological identification fluctuated in the low 1930s between 2008 and 2012, in 2014 that number began to skyrocket.

Since 1998, the highest level of male liberal identification was recorded in 2016 (29%), but this figure has fallen in recent years.

SCAL’s”American Storylines‘ suggested that there are a number of factors driving this leftward trend of young women, including more time in academia (particularly compared to men), less likelihood of marriage or marriage, increasing secularity and homosexuality, and the socio-political implications of the Dobbs judgment, which was overturned Roe v. calf.


Daniel Cox, Senior Fellow for Polls and Public Opinion at AEI, written down that today significantly more women under the age of 30 are unmarried (15%) than twenty years ago, when around a third were married. In 1972, 55% of women aged 18-29 were married.

Cox cites a Study 2017 by Christopher Stout, Kelsy Kretschmer, and Leah Ruppanner, who suggested that single women whose interests are misaligned with a spouse or family or are “institutionalized” may be less likely to support policies that would foster such otherwise shared economic prospects.

In a phenomenon the researchers termed “linked destinies,” instead of acting in mutual interest with a spouse, they may choose to act in concert with other members of their sex to support policies that are not necessarily family-centric .

Although young men are now also less likely to be married than previous male cohorts in their age group, they have not made a major leftward ideological shift.

Another important factor related to marriage (or at least heterosexual mating) is the influence of parenting. A Tulane University study published last month found that parenthood prompts individuals to become more conservative — to prioritize safety, stability and family values.

The study also showed that those “motivated to care for children” may be less likely to favor policies that undermine the family and marriage or encourage destabilizing forces like adultery and promiscuity.

college graduate

The Atlantic last year reported that US colleges enrolled 1.5 million fewer students in 2020 than five years earlier and that men accounted for over 70% of the decline. Since the mid-1980s, women have earned more bachelor’s degrees than men each year.

Cox suggested that the formal educational surplus of men by women in the gender delta is reflected in liberal identification, largely because of “the stronger link between educational attainment and political behavior”. This has been demonstrated in recent elections, where women “have become a much more loyal Democratic electorate.”

In the 2018 midterm elections, 59% of women voted for Democrats. in the Survey June-September 2022only 39.4% of women said they supported Republicans.

A study from 2018 found that among 8,688 tenure-track professors with PhDs from 51 of the top 66 liberal arts colleges in the United States, the average Democrat-to-Republican ratio was 10.4 to 1. When West Point and Annapolis military colleges were excluded, the ratio became 12.7 to 1.

In addition to the strong influence of e.g left academics, Cox suggested that extracurricular campus life has a profound political impact on students. Students are surrounded by others similarly susceptible to left-wing influence and separated from conservative or working-class views that may not be espoused or allowed on the campus.


Cox stated that young women “have experienced the most dramatic change in their religious identity” after experiencing a fivefold increase in religious nonaffiliation since the late 1990s. The number is now at 38%, 17 points higher than the general population.

Traditional religiosity and religious commitment were correlated with the expression of more conservative views.


Cox suggested that young women’s turn to liberalism may also be driven by their quick relative identification as gay, lesbian, “queer”, “bisexual” or “transgender”.

THE SCALE reported April that while 75% of young men say they are only attracted to women (91% of older men said they are only attracted to women), only 56% of women said they were only attracted to men .

A Article September 2021 in Public Opinion Quarterly revealed that “LGBT America is decidedly liberal … in its general political leanings, voting choices, and attitudes toward a variety of political issues.”

Roe v. calf

According to an October 4 announcement SCAL report According to an August 2022 American Perspectives Survey, young women are far less concerned about economic problems than their male peers and far more concerned about restrictions on baby killing.

While 46% of males in the age group follow abortion-related news, 64% of the female cohort follow the news very or fairly closely. When it comes to inflation and gas prices, 70% of men pay close attention, while only 55% of female respondents say they pay close attention.

While abortion has garnered a lot of public attention, only 36% of Americans rank it as a critical issue. However, 61% of young women see it as the “most important issue”. For comparison: only 32% of young women name crime as a critical issue, 7% above the overall average.

In a recent piece for FiveThirtyEightCox contrasted Millennials’ relatively conservative views on abortion with those of Gen Z.

Because of their dwindling religiosity, women under the age of 29 may be less interested in religious arguments against fetal killing. Additionally, other pro-life arguments may be less appealing to them, particularly if they have been struck by popular suggestions that their education, career, and personal freedom from responsibility are the keys to happiness and success. Cox wrote, “It is possible that support for abortion rights is rooted in the idea that an unplanned pregnancy could undermine those aspirations.”

21-year-old Rose Merjos narrated The hill that “I would always vote for a pro-abortion candidate.” The Wesleyan University government major claimed, “Almost everyone either knows someone who has had an abortion or has had one themselves.”

Merjos suggested that women “liberalize[d]through their involvement in campus groups and political community organizations. Almost twice as many young women describe themselves as liberal than young men, although the trend is worsening

Laura Coffey

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