Friday, October 26, 2012

Romney-Ryan Agenda-- Overwhelmingly Rejected By Younger Voters


Polls generally show the youth vote (18-29 year olds) surly but leaning strongly towards Obama and the Democrats. In the Harvard poll linked above, Obama leads Romney 48-26%. And although 54% of these young people say they disapproved of Democrats in Congress (41% approving), an astounding 71% disapproved of the obstructionist Republicans who have purposefully turned Congress into the enemy of the American people (23% approving, too dumb to know any better).

The problem for Obama is that those who say they were definitely vote is down by 15% when compared to 2008. A case has been made that even if overall voting falls off, young voters lean so much more towards Obama than towards Romney, that even with a fall-off in overall youth participation, Obama will still get the same numbers he got from young voters in 2008.

Ohio has stuck doggedly with Obama, perhaps because Romney tried to force the auto industry into bankruptcy. But perhaps because the youth vote there is so solid for Obama-- and so immune to the Romney-Ryan siren call. The battle for early voting among young voters in Ohio-- and in all the swing states-- is being won by Obama and it could provide him with his margin of victory... in Ohio and nationally. The Romney campaign knows they have no chance of winning young voters but they're trying to find the ignorant and bigoted among them so they can run up their margins here and there.
Annie Hartnett, 20, an economics and political science student who is also a leader of the campus Democrats, insists there is just as much excitement for Mr Obama as there was four years ago (when she volunteered for the party, although she was too young to vote) but not for the same reasons.

"The first time around for Obama there was a novelty factor, he wanted to be the first black President," she said. "I actually feel more enthusiasm this time but of a different kind. It's for the quality of what we are being asked to vote for. Obama has been good to us."

She cites his pro-gay stance, his commitment to keep student loan interest rates low, and his healthcare reforms that allow students to stay on their parents' insurance until they are 26.

Certainly, there is little evidence of the students at Iowa State being disengaged. The campus calendar has been strewn with student debates ahead of the start of voting today, opinion articles have appeared in the Iowa State Daily, the campus paper, and there was the President's visit.

"I am beginning to dream about it and frankly I am getting a little overwhelmed," said Zach Houboug, 20, a landscape design student who plans to vote for Mr Romney. "I will be relieved when it's all over." His friend, Joe Arentson, also a Republican, nods. "You are kind of swarmed by the Democrats. I just keep walking, avoid eye contact, you know. Obama promised change and I haven't seen any change."

Also different this time, says Ms Hartnett, is the ubiquity of social networking. It's not just that sites like Twitter, Tumblr and Facebook will boost turnout; they also give students the chance to instantly verify what the candidates are saying, which Democrats in particular are doing with Mr Romney. "Our generation is the generation of information checking," she reasoned. "We are always on a phone or some kind of device and anything anyone tells us we can immediately check out."

She isn't fazed by the recent tightening of the polls, especially a Pew poll showing support swinging suddenly to Mr Romney. "We are almost never polled. I have never been polled," she said. "If you put the youth vote into that Pew poll, those numbers would be much different."


 . . . will appear tomorrow (Saturday) at 6pm PT. We'll be preparing to hear Tatiana's Letter Scene from Tchaikovsky's Yevgeny Onegin on Sunday.

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At 10:59 PM, Anonymous me said...

The problem for Obama is that those who say they were definitely vote is down by 15% when compared to 2008.

No surprise there. Obama proved the point of those who say voting doesn't matter. The country voted overwhelmingly for Change, and Obama delivered Same.

And now he's promising a "Grand Bargain" with republicans if he gets reelected. Shit, I know what that means - it means he'll roll over and give them everything they ask for, just like he has been doing the last four years.


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