This comes in the wake of the October 7 terrorist attack on Israel by Hamas, which was met with immediate support for Israel from Biden and his administration.
Joseph Fisher, a student at the University of Michigan, expressed his disillusionment with the president's stance, stating, "I just can't see how I can ever muster up the courage a year from now to walk to a ballot box and vote for this person that has directly been responsible for so much harm." This sentiment reflects a growing concern among young Democrats who are considering voting for a third-party candidate, even if it inadvertently benefits former President Donald Trump.
Bhavani Iyer, another student at the University, echoed this sentiment, indicating a shift from her previous voting pattern. "In past elections, I voted a straight ticket," she said. "But in this one, I feel like it's probably not going to be that way."
Despite the mounting pressure from Democrats, Muslim groups, and members within his administration to call for a ceasefire, Biden has remained steadfast in his support for Israel. White House national security spokesperson John Kirby emphasized that the United States believes a ceasefire would only benefit Hamas.
In response to the growing discontent among young voters, Kevin Munoz, spokesperson for Biden’s re-election, stated, "We are working hard to highlight how an extreme MAGA agenda would devastate the financial security, safety, and freedom of young people, and how President Biden and Vice President Harris are fighting for the future that America’s young people deserve." He added, "As Democrats did in 2020 and 2022, we will meet younger Americans where they are and earn their votes.”
However, the dissatisfaction among young Democrats continues to grow. Breah Marie Willy, a University of Michigan student, shared that her peers have started forming "parasocial" relationships with civilians in Gaza through social media and have begun referring to the president as "Genocide Joe" due to his refusal to call for a ceasefire.
Zaynab Elkolaly, another student at the University, summed up the campus sentiment towards Biden, stating, "The general sentiment [on campus] towards Joe Biden is that he absolutely sucks. But we have to put up with him because his alternative is even worse." This growing disillusionment among young Democrats signals a potential shift in the political landscape as the 2024 election approaches.