The Youth Vote and the 2009 Elections

Sarah Burris of Future Majority beats me to the punch in rebutting a blog post about a “Rising Tide of the GOP Youth,” as described by The Weekly Standard’s Rachel Hoff. Burris writes:

First, while Rachel is right to congratulate McDonnell for his campaign’s youth outreach, I hardly think it has anything to do with young voters having gone to the GOP…

This doesn’t mean young voters have gone GOP, it means that when you put forth the effort to get young voters, you speak to their issues, and you get out the vote you get a good result.

I wish I felt comfortable celebrating the fact that the 2009 elections meant young voters were turning toward the GOP, but unfortunately I just don’t buy it. Hoff suggests that “18-29 year olds in Virginia voted for Bob McDonnell over the Democrat 54% to 44%” could indicate a new trend, but as Burris notes, in Virginia there was not a “strong Democrat at the top of the ticket but…[there was] a strong Republican.” The unfortunate fact is that one Republican candidate’s successful effort in winning the youth vote does not indicate any sort of trend for future elections (for a counterargument, just look to New Jersey, where 57% of young voters voted for Corzine).

And while Hoff notes that “turnout among 18-29 year olds was 19% in New Jersey and only 17% in Virginia,” an “alarmingly low” turnout, it would be a huge mistake for the GOP to write off the youth vote based upon these numbers. As I have written previously, what’s at stake here is that the Republican Party stands to lose a generation of voters to the Democratic Party, potentially for life. Although Chairman Steele has taken some major efforts to reform the Republican National Committee, such as a huge push to modernize the RNC’s new media efforts, there still has not been a substantial push by Steele’s RNC to win over young voters.

In the end, both Burris and Hoff agree that making a real, authentic effort to earn the votes of young voters will result in young voter turnout. The Republican Party still has time left to turn the tide and prevent many of today’s young voters from becoming lifelong Democrats; however, the clock is ticking and time is running out. Major congratulations are due to the McDonnell campaign and their young voter outreach, but there is no time to pat ourselves on the back. Both the RNC and Republican candidates must follow Bob McDonnell’s lead and find unique new ways to reach out to and ultimately win over young voters.

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Don't underestimate the psychological power of a single vote.

I am in my mid 40s and I know plenty of people who have *never* voted Republican.  At this point, they would rather cut off their right arm than vote for anyone but a Democrat. 

For a leftist to vote for a conservative even once means that they have to make a psychological journey that breaks down walls that have been building over their lifetime.  Once those walls have been breached, it's over. Trust me, I know this from personal experience. In my case, I was a solid Democrat vote until 2004 when I just couldn't vote for Kerry.  A whole bunch of things switched in my head and now my family complains about what a right-wing nutjob I am.

If McDonnell governs reasonbly well, the young people that voted for him will never ever be solid Democrats again.


That'd be more compelling

...if McDonnell had run as a consevative.  Instead he ran a very center right campaign and went out of his way not to be associated with the republican brand or the nuttiness that passes for conservativism these days.  That's precisely why Deeds tried so hard to tie McDonnell to his thesis- because the thesis sounded a lot like that same nutty conservativism that McDonnell eschewed.


Democrats are a disaster for young voters

Democrats have a job-killing agenda, and the unemployment rate for young people (18-25) is near 30%.

Given that, the youth should be fleeing the Democrats in droves.

It is a testament to the power of liberal brainwashing in academia and the power of ideological bias in the culture that so many young people havent yet woken up to how bad and dangerous liberalism is to them personally and their future.

People change as they get old

Life events (marriage, childbirth, job success) change how people look at the world.  And life events more often than not change people towards conservatism.  In 1972, McGovern was destroyed, but he about split the under 30 vote.  I'm sure some analysts at the time thought that McGovern type values would eventually triumph.  But that segment of the population is more conservative now than back then.  Events change people.

One other youth vote caveat: the American population as a whole is aging, not getting younger.  The percentage of voters under 30 will very slowly shrink in years to come.  The elderly will continue to become relatively more powerful.  For these two reasons, problems with the youth vote will pale in comparison with the troubles Republicans have with non-whites.

2012 Will go Obama


2012 IN THE BAG!Will most Americans leave their community herds and think as individuals during the upcoming election season, or remain emotionally committed to their fears and feelings? If staying in the herd Obama’s leftward march is assured in 2012, according to Hollywood. The Rousseau-Marx coalition believes the emotions of the populace will rule in 2012, more than it did in 2008. The movie 2012 will scare people for a couple of years, with more dire threats of climate change and a few more big movie scares focused on why we need our new Messiah, Obama, and his ruling elite, reelected and in control in times of great need. If they can drive each of us into an emotion-driven herd of frightened animals, like those who stormed the Bastille or, from disturbed emotions, hang those whose differences they fear, they will have won. Their enemy is reason, plain and simple individual reason, the Thomas Jefferson way, what they claim is libertarian extremism. After all, individual freedom is what the left fears most and must defeat, with the help of Hollywood and media propagandists. Individual freedom is what made America stand above all nations in progress and prosperity. Obama can only win again if he can reduce Americans, for the most part, into a frightened herd, as he does with stimulus, health care and climate change laws.


Predicting the political environment

...3 years out is a fool's errand.  Right now it's hard to predict next year's elections.

Americans Getting Organized

A majority of Americans agreed with President Obama in 2008, that the interests of the community are more important than are the interests of the individual.  As a result, a new union organizing movement has begun, creating the Community Voters Union (CVU).  Using the popular Card Check Program, community organizers forming the CVU will bring voters into a union, simplifying their community life.  When 1% of people in a region sign the CVU card checks given them at shopping malls, places of employment as well as door-to-door, the CVU will officially form.  They will be responsible for voting the interests of the community.  Voters need never go to the polls again.  Union leaders voting the community’s interests block big-money right wing attempts to sway voters.  Dues from each voter will pay the costs of this welcomed voter service.  The Community Union Councils gather periodically to decide who will hold elected offices as well as new legislation and enforcement procedures. The voters in community will never again have to worry about making those choices. The President encourages voters to take advantage of the CVU so the voting process is more orderly and predictable.  Because of his enormous popularity, people are rushing to obtain voting cards to sign up.  CVU will usher into American Politics a glorious new day of certainty and peace in voting. Right-wing extremist critics claim the first card checks will have only names from the graveyards to establish CVU supremacy.  They claim CVU is patterned after the USSR soviets, regional community voting blocs that transmit community interests to one central presidium or parliament. They are partially correct, in that the American Congress will be changed to a parliament and the Constitution set aside as a historical document only.  However, only community interests are important, which assigns to the CVU the control over what was once called “private property” and bank accounts in each of the regions they control. This will assure Americans that the wealth will be spread around, as the President was so well credited in his campaign.  There will no longer be term limits assigned to the office of President, only that he receives a periodic vote of confidence from the CVU.  Succession falls to the choice of the President when the need arises.  This, most Americans agree, is how an orderly government works.  For thousands of years, orderly government rested with a sovereign, a chief of state, where family members were trained to take the reins when the need arose, so we can look to having one of Obama’s daughters rise to that leadership position.  (Is this really an absurdity?