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Today near the central lawn at the University of Virginia. Photo: Max Patten

Last week, we wrote about a reported surge in youth voting in U.S. battleground state primaries — at least in part due to the "Parkland effect," a result of the registration campaign by high school students seeking stricter gun laws.

Driving the news: How energized voters aged 18–29 are is a major preoccupation. If they turn out on Nov. 6 in larger numbers than usual, they could be decisive in close races.

  • For an early snapshot of the landscape, Max Patten, a freshman at the University of Virginia, did a survey for Axios on the campus' central lawn on Sept. 25, National Voter Registration Day.
  • The location is important: Virginia is a key battleground state, and Charlottesville — the scene of a deadly August 2017 march by white supremacists — is a major fault line in the divided nation.
  • It's also in a congressional district that could flip: President Trump won the district by 5 points in 2016, but Real Clear Politics rates it a toss-up.

Patten writes of his thinking prior to the survey: UVA "is known for a strong emphasis on tradition and conservative values. ... Will students here be likely voters in midterms, and will they even vote left?"

Riley Creamer, secretary of College Republicans in Virginia, told Patten in an email that “most newly registered voters will be Democrats.”

By the numbers: What Patten actually found:

  • 28 of 31 students surveyed were registered to vote.
  • 21 — 75% of those registered — said they will probably vote Nov. 6.
  • In terms of leanings, 16 of 31 students — just over half — identified as Democrats, and all but one said they would probably vote. Just four said they were Republican. The eight who saw themselves as moderates or independents identified as the least likely to show up.

The bottom line: Patten said he expected to hear much of President Trump. But, he said, "[t]he students never (with the exception of 1) mentioned Trump by name but took views strongly contrary to him on the issues they mentioned."

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus variant surveillance varies widely by state — Omicron cases confirmed in 5 U.S. states America probably won't lead the effort to understand Omicron.
  2. Vaccines: Omicron adds urgency to vaccinating world — Omicron fuels the case for COVID boosters — Moderna loses patent battles tied to COVID vaccine.
  3. Politics: Nevada to impose insurance surcharge on unvaccinated state workers — New Jersey GOP lawmakers defy statehouse COVID policy — Oklahoma sues Biden administration over Pentagon vaccine mandate — Omicron travel bans are sign of what's to come.
  4. World: WHO: Delta health measures help fight Omicron — COVID cases surge in South Africa in sign Omicron wave is coming — Germany approves new restrictions for unvaccinated people.
  5. Variant tracker: Where different strains are spreading.

Prosecutors charge parents of Michigan school shooting suspect

Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

The parents of a 15-year-old accused of killing four students and wounding seven other people at a Michigan high school have been charged with involuntary manslaughter, according to court documents.

Driving the news: James and Jennifer Crumbley were each charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter.

2 hours ago - World

Putin to demand legal guarantee against NATO expansion in call with Biden

Biden and Putin meeting in Geneva in June. Photo: Mikhail Metzel\TASS via Getty Images

Russian President Vladimir Putin is demanding a legally binding guarantee that NATO will not expand east — including to Ukraine — and plans to raise the issue in an upcoming phone call with President Biden, according to the Kremlin.

Why it matters: Russia has massed more than 94,000 troops on the border with Ukraine and could be preparing for a large-scale invasion at the end of January, Ukraine's defense minister said Friday.