Quick access to top menu Direct access to main contents Quick access to page bottom

Trump’s Solid 60% Support: College-Educated GOP Voters Rally Behind Him

The Rise of Donald Trump and His Support Within the Republican Party

U.S. Republican Congressman Jim Jordan (left) and others are attending a rally for Donald Trump at Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa, on October 14 (local time)./AFP·Yonhap News

The New York Times (NYT) reported on October 14 (local time) that the rise of Donald Trump, who commands around 60% support within the Republican Party, can be attributed to a shift in the sentiments of conservative Republican college graduates.

The NYT noted that although Trump’s base initially consisted of blue-collar white voters, the recent surge in support for him has been primarily fueled by college-educated Republicans. It assessed that these often underestimated individuals within the evolving, blue-collar Republican Party are now at the forefront of the party’s internal debate on topics like abortion, foreign policy, and culture.

College-Educated Republicans as a Key Factor in Trump’s Support

Trump’s efforts to generate a Republican wave in the 2022 midterm elections ultimately fell short of his promises. In the following weeks, he made a controversial proposal to overturn the results of the 2020 election by advocating for the abolition of the Constitution. During this time, he hosted a dinner with individuals like Nick Fuentes, a notorious white supremacist and Holocaust denier, as well as rapper Kanye West, who faced widespread criticism for making anti-Semitic remarks, causing significant backlash within his party. Consequently, Trump’s approval ratings plummeted.

A poll conducted by Suffolk University and USA Today indicated that 61% of Republican voters sought a different Republican presidential candidate rather than supporting Trump, with 76% of college-educated Republicans sharing this sentiment.

However, in this month’s recent poll, 62% of Republican voters, including 60% of college graduates, supported Trump. According to a Fox News poll, Trump’s approval rating among college-educated white Republicans has doubled to 60% over the past year.

Election 2024 Trump
Donald Trump is eating pizza with firefighters at a fire station in Waukee, Iowa, on October 14 (local time)./AP·Yonhap News

Impact of Manhattan Grand Jury Decision
Analysis of How the Indictment Affected Trump’s Approval Ratings

The New York Times (NYT) analysis suggests that the shift in sentiment among college-educated Republicans occurred following a significant event in March of the previous year when a grand jury in Manhattan, New York, chose to indict Trump criminally. He became the first former and current U.S. president to face charges related to hush money payments made to an adult film actress just before the 2016 election.

At the time, Trump received less than half of the support of Republican voters in most polls conducted over several months. Still, his approval rating exceeded 50% just four days after the Manhattan indictment and has since been rising to the 60% range; the NYT quoted the U.S. average poll by-election prediction site FiveThirtyEight.

The NYT also reported that among nearly 20 college-educated Republican voters interviewed, many expressed skepticism about the fairness and proportionality of the 91 charges and 4 criminal indictments targeting Trump. Some cited their lack of enthusiasm for Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, viewing Trump as having a better chance of winning the election than Nikki Haley. Others, who prioritize domestic issues over foreign relations and are concerned about high interest rates, believe that Trump represents a better choice.

Trump’s Potential Nomination and Impact on the General Election

Donald Trump is speaking at a rally at Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa, on October 14 (local time)./AFP·Yonhap News
An environmental activist is protesting with a picket that reads ‘Trump, Environmental Criminal’ at a rally for Donald Trump at Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa, on October 14 (local time)./Reuters·Yonhap News

The NYT analyzed that if Trump wins the Republican primary, he will set a record as the first Republican to be nominated for president thrice. The ability to maintain support from both blue-collar and college-educated Republicans, who have an educational gap, could have a decisive impact on the general election against President Joe Biden after the Republican primary.

According to an AP VoteCast survey of more than 110,000 voters, 9% of Republican voters did not vote for then-President Trump in the 2020 election, and according to an analysis of data by the NYT, 56% of the 9% were college-educated Republicans.

In response, some election experts say that only 4% of Democratic supporters did not vote for then-Democratic candidate Joe Biden, and this gap was a factor in Trump’s failure to be re-elected, the NYT reported.

Yubi Han Editor's Profile image




  • Romans 16:17-18 - Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. (Read More...) 1 John 4:1 - Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are g

  • 2 Timothy 4:3-4 - For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 - For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostl

Share it on