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College Women Are Most Likely to Vote for Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren in the 2020 Election – Here’s Why That’s Surprising

Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are the top candidates for college women heading into the primary election, according to Her Campus’s 2020 pre-election survey. The survey, which polled over 500 students, found that 28% of college women would vote for Sanders right now, and 26% for Warren. President Trump took the lead against fellow Republican candidates, with 11% of college women saying they would vote for him right now. 

Original Illustration by Melissa Hines for Her Campus Media

When the respondents were asked to pick their second choice candidate, Sanders and Warren still dominated. However, Joe Biden had a significant increase with 14% of respondents saying that they’d vote for him as a second choice, while Pete Buttigieg (10%) and Andrew Yang (9%) followed.  

Original Illustration by Melissa Hines for Her Campus Media

College women’s strong support for Sanders and Warren is interesting, in light of the fact that college women are more likely to identify as “liberal” (42%) than “very liberal” (25%), and these two candidates can be considered among the most liberal on the current playing field.

In a similar pre-election survey released by Her Campus in 2016 that polled 619 college women, 50% of the respondents were leaning toward Sanders in the primaries over other candidates such as Hillary Clinton, Ted Cruz and Donald Trump. Despite the outpour of praise from young voters toward Sanders, Clinton became the final Democratic presidential candidate competing against Trump, and liberals went on to lose the 2016 election as a whole. This defeat underscores the importance of voter turnout at the polls during the next few months. 

Original Illustration by Melissa Hines for Her Campus Media

According to Her Campus’s pre-election survey, Sanders has managed to maintain the attention of college women with his extensive political resume and policies—but the top-choice candidate can only win with enough voter participation. 

If you want to make a change, check out Her Campus’s guide on voting in the primary election and get yourself registered ASAP.


Gina was formerly the Beauty & Culture Editor at Her Campus, where she oversaw content and strategy for the site's key verticals. She was also the person behind @HerCampusBeauty, and all those other glowy selfies you faved. She got her start in digital media as a Campus Correspondent at HC Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, where she graduated in 2017 with degrees in English and Theater. Now, Gina is an LA-based writer and editor, and you can regularly find her wearing a face mask in bed and scrolling through TikTok.