Democrats are banking on winning the millennial vote.
And they are counting on running up the score with 18-29 year-old voters.
But surprising poll numbers show young voters just aren’t that into Hillary and it could cost her the election.
Millennials aren’t flocking to Donald Trump, however.
They have found third party candidates Gary Johnson and Jill Stein as a more comfortable landing spot.
The New York Times reports:
“Mrs. Clinton’s weakness with young voters is largely because of the support third-party candidates are drawing away. Mr. Trump’s support among the young has hovered around 25 percent in recent polls.
More than a third of voters 18 to 29 said in the latest New York Times/CBS News poll that they would vote for either Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate, or Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate: Mr. Johnson had the support of 26 percent of those voters, and Ms. Stein had 10 percent.
Given the choice of just Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Trump, 10 percent said they would not vote at all — double that of any other age group. An ABC News/Washington Post poll this month found a similar level of support for third-party candidates: 20 percent for Mr. Johnson and 6 percent for Ms. Stein among registered voters ages 18 to 39.
The stubborn popularity of the third-party candidates has become a concern to Mrs. Clinton and her allies. So far, the support for them has not softened, as it often does in the fall.
“Historically, that’s what has happened,” said Jefrey Pollock, who is advising the “super PAC” working on Mrs. Clinton’s behalf, Priorities USA. “But history isn’t repeating itself right now, which is one common theme of this election cycle.”
Although Hillary’s poll numbers with young voters are well behind those of Barack Obama in the 2008 and 2012 elections, Hillary has stepped up her game by using Bernie Sanders as a campaign trail surrogate.
Sanders crushed Clinton in the Democratic primary with millennials.
Democrat leaning millennials are even farther to the left than the national party.
A Reason-Rupe survey found 53% of 18-29 year-olds have a favorable opinion of socialism.
But so far, Sanders popularity with millennials has not translated to Hillary.
A campaign event in Ohio drew only 150 people.
Voters under the age of 30 see Clinton as an inauthentic puppet of Wall Street.
The New York Times also reports on some of the difficulties Clinton has in reaching young voters:
“Nick Chanko, 20, is a student at McGill University in Montreal who plans to vote in his home state, New York. A registered Democrat, he said he would either vote for Ms. Stein or not vote at all.
“I feel like a lot of the stuff Hillary does, you can see when she is trying to, like, earn the youth vote, and it just doesn’t work,” Mr. Chanko said. “It’s just kind of cringeworthy. She just doesn’t seem genuine.”
Mr. Chanko said he did remember Mr. Nader’s candidacy but thought it was unfair to blame protest votes for spoiling an election.
The debate over the merits of casting a third-party ballot can seem endlessly circular.
“I understand the frustration, but channel that frustration into making government work, not into throwing away your vote,” Ms. Warren said in an interview. “They should not trust the system,” she added. “But the answer is to seize the system and make it work for the people, not to just turn it over to the bigots and billionaires.”
By some estimates, the level of turnout by young voters in 2012 provided the difference for Barack Obama in many key swing-states.
Hillary is still expected to win the majority of the youth vote easily.
But will the turnout reach the levels she needs to offset heavy losses in other demographics?