Nate Cohn Highlights Trump’s Rising Support Among Nonvoters Ahead of 2024 Election


Nate Cohn from the New York Times, who started FiveThirtyEight, highlighted concerns on Friday about the increasing momentum of former President Donald Trump as the November general election approaches.

Cohn noted that Trump’s progress is largely due to gains among voters who aren’t closely engaged with politics, don’t follow mainstream news, and are irregular voters.

In the 2020 election, President Joe Biden had a two-point lead in that demographic. However, by 2024, the support has shifted, giving Trump a 14-point lead among politically unenthusiastic nonvoters. Biden maintains a two-point lead among the regular 2020 voters.

This lead among nonvoters—who historically do not turn out at the polls—could make it “easy to imagine how [the race] could quickly become more volatile” by November.

Cohn emphasizes that the “unusual significance” of nonvoters may present “major challenges for pollsters, who have long known that low-turnout voters are less likely to respond to political surveys.” This may lead to underestimating Trump’s actual reach.

Voter behavior is unpredictable, with many voters participating in one presidential election but abstaining from the next, and vice versa. This pattern could counter Cohn’s argument, as he adds, “Mr. Trump’s big edge among nonvoters means the exact number of new voters could be hugely important or even decisive.”

Cohn captures the essence of the nonvoter issue aptly.

“Of course, it’s unlikely that disengaged, irregular voters have already formed solid plans about November,” he stated. “There’s plenty of time for them to make up or change their minds about whom they might vote for—and about whether they’ll vote at all.”

According to FiveThirtyEight’s polling average, Trump holds a 1.5% lead over Biden, his largest since early April.

Ross O'Keefe
Ross O'Keefe
Breaking News Reporter. Ross pitches and writes polished quick-hit pieces about a variety of subjects with a focus on politics. He graduated from the University of Maryland's Phillip Merrill College of Journalism in 2023.

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