(featured image source flickr-schroepfer)
A hard fact of this election is that millennials do not like Hillary Clinton. In the same 2016 season most millennials began supporting more socialistic policies such as tuition free colleges, expansion of health care provisions, in addition to many of them discovering entrepreneurship at earlier ages than their parents or grandparents. Of course they flocked to someone like Bernie Sanders who touted those policies as core tenants of his presidential campaign.
When Sanders lost the nomination, a good deal of millennials deferred to third party candidates such as Gary Johnson because they believed those candidates’ values coalesced more with their new-found desires of a liberal, European style system. Ironically a good deal of Johnson’s policy proposals actually contradict those that most millennials supported Sanders for, include Johnson wanting to abolish the Department of Education, further devolve health-care to the states, and reduce the corporate tax rate from 32 to 0 percent. When you put those factors in perspective it seems that the only candidate that could possibly best represent Sanders’ millennial dreams is…
Clinton wants to defer student loans for those engaging in startups or any other form of entrepreneurial work. She wants to expand the presence of health clinics in addition to continuing the expansion of the Affordable Care Act, not to mention promising to protect consumers from pharmaceutical price hikes. Finally, she wishes to forgo tuition for community colleges as well as public state schools for those making less than 82,000 dollars a year. All of these were factors that served as the groundwork for Bernie Sanders’ campaign with Sanders himself touting Clinton’s aforementioned policy proposals as important reasons to vote for her.
Yet her poll lead among millennials has collapsed in recent weeks, with many promising to either vote third party or not vote at all. However, this diminished millennial enthusiasm has almost nothing to do with her actual policy proposals and more to do with her public image. The polls have shown that millennials view her as untrustworthy, vindictive and unprincipled which according to The Atlantic, shows that they have “accepted the portrait that Bernie Sanders painted of her during their long primary struggle.” This indicates that millennials are basing the question of whether or not to vote for Clinton on the “idea” of Clinton, rather than Clinton herself.
This is especially dangerous considering how millennial inactivity could sway the election in Trump’s favor based predominately on metanarrative assumptions and not Clinton’s actual policy proposals. Before millennials make their ideological decisions about Clinton or any other candidates during this election, they absolutely must do their own research beforehand. Go on their campaign websites and investigate what the candidates are proposing, take a look at their interviews with the press, as well editorials about them from valued sources such as The Washington Post, BBC, The Wall Street Journal, or The Los Angeles Times. Hillary Clinton best represents millennial desires for increased educational and entrepreneurial opportunities and decreased financial strain regarding health and student loans. Yet such proposals mean nothing if millennials don’t know that they exist.