According to the study, not only were young voters more likely to back Obama, but they were more likely than any of their older counterparts to identify themselves as Democrats (44 percent).
This shouldn’t be too surprising, as younger generations always tend to march to the beat of their own drums.
But the GOP shouldn’t throw its hands in the air and give up on the liberal, free-spirited future of America. Young voters (aged 30 and younger) made up 19 percent of the electorate in the 2012 election, and that number is increasing with each presidential election.
If the GOP wants to reach young voters, it needs a new face and a new approach to social issues.
It needs to stop being the party of old, rich white guys who make jaw-dropping statements about rape and abortion. (Seriously. Can we stop doing that please?)
Sure, it’s difficult – if not impossible – to change people’s views on gun control, marijuana or abortion. That shouldn’t be part of the game plan. Instead, Republican candidates should treat young voters like adults and start the conversation.
Focus on proven results and how the Republican Party is truly looking after our future. Present new ideas, and instead of being focused on differing opinions of young voters on social issues, find other ways to relate to us.
I’m not sure that the young (ish) faces of Sen. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., will be enough to change the image of the entire party. Instead, we need to see leaders that are off the beaten path, but are forward-thinking.
“Republican” doesn’t have to continue to be a taboo word for Gen Y.
The time to begin campaigning for 2016 is now.
Gen Y is a weekly opinion piece covering issues that matter most to young, influential Americans through their late 30s. Jessica O. Swink, a 20-something, is the digital political producer for LIN Media and contributing editor toonPolitix.
Copyright 2013 LIN TV News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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