The Democrats worry about young voters

President Obama was elected with the help of an enthusiastic turnout of young voters, many of them exercising the franchise for the first time. Charmed by a youthful candidate, excited by the prospect of a history-making election, they went to the polls in droves.

Now, Democrats are worried that those same voters won’t turn out for the mid-term elections:

Less than 24 hours after President Barack Obama announced his plan to re-build the coalition that helped elect him in 2008, new numbers from Gallup suggest one of the pillars of that foundation is decidedly shaky.

Less than one in four voters aged 18-29 described themselves as “very enthusiastic” about the 2010 midterm election. Those numbers compare unfavorably to voters between 50 and 64 (44 percent “very enthusiastic”), 65 and older (41 percent “very enthusiastic”) and 30 to 49 (32 percent “very enthusiastic”).

“The fact that voters under age 50 — and particularly those under 30 — are less enthusiastic about voting this year is not a new phenomenon,” wrote Gallup’s Frank Newport. “Voter turnout typically skews older.”

While the data is in keeping with traditional voting patterns, it makes obvious the difficulty facing the White House as they seek to reconstruct the combination of young voters, independents and African Americans who helped propel Obama into the White House.

Looking back at exit polls from the last three presidential races, it’s clear that the story is not how young people comprised larger and larger segments of the electorate but rather how much more Democratic they voted between 2000 and 2008.

201 comments Add your comment

arnold

April 27th, 2010
2:33 pm

It’s mostly a matter of time. They may not turn out as heavy for the mid term elections, but they are the future.

The Oddball

April 27th, 2010
2:34 pm

The Oddball is counting on you young folks to fix the mess left by my generation, the “Woodstock Generation.” Read up and get your butts out to the polls.

Cynthia is Sexy!

April 27th, 2010
2:35 pm

They wont turnout and even if they do the huge tide of discontent will overwhelm their silly “land of oz and camelpuke” fantasy has and will continue to be torn asunder.

They Dems have only themselves to thank.

Cynthia is Sexy!

April 27th, 2010
2:37 pm

Its time for common sense and responsiblity to take over the Federal Govt. Be it Dems, Reps or TP’s…

Cynthia is Sexy!

April 27th, 2010
2:39 pm

Obama saddles us with this huge HCare debt and now whines about needing a special blue ribbon bi-partisan commission to correct his mess. Then he and the Dems can “we invited our comrades from across the aisle and they balked…”

No dice Obama…the majority now see you for what you are…INEPT and a Double talker.

commoncents

April 27th, 2010
2:45 pm

Now we can finally leave voting up to the people familiar with the issues who are not here to vote on popularity and “what’s cool”

Peadawg

April 27th, 2010
2:46 pm

“Charmed by a youthful candidate, excited by the prospect of a history-making eelction”

Which is very very sad. Don’t worry about the topics and what’s wrong with the country. He’s young and the prospect of a “historic election” is something those 18 yr olds couldn’t pass up. What’s also more sad…it wasn’t just the young people who acted like this.

BTW, Cynthia…you misspelled election. You don’t use spell-check before you publish stuff?

Barry

April 27th, 2010
2:48 pm

You know you are ignorant and naive when you have to have someone remind/beg you to go out and vote. Those that went out and voted for the first time in 2008 probably cast their first and last vote that election day. They voted more out of it being the trendy thing to do at the time than them actually understanding or caring about the process and its implications. I can assure you the majority of those new voters knew no names on the election ballot besides that of Obama. Sad, but it is what makes up the majority of the electorate that the Democrats cater to.

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 27th, 2010
2:55 pm

Heck, if my Savior suddenly hit me with an $800 tax just for not keeping health insurance, I’d probably find a new religion too.

Robert Littel

April 27th, 2010
2:56 pm

The youth were charmed into voting for the voice of reason over a senile butt kissing corporatist shill and the screech owl from Alaska, so it was a positive occurrence. That they, through laziness, or a short attention span, would hand the government back to the corporatists before the job can be completed, would be a shame. The corporatists are in the game for the long haul and they are counting on an impatient and generally apathetic voting public to cave into banality and put them back in total control, where we can all be screwed to the wall again.

ctucker

April 27th, 2010
2:57 pm

Peadawg, spell check isn’t a bad thing. I’ll correct

Union

April 27th, 2010
2:59 pm

You mean the elementary kids that were made to sing “obama” songs cannot vote yet? bummer

Scout

April 27th, 2010
2:59 pm

Cynthia:

Yes, hopefully some of the “lemmings” will stay home.

john

April 27th, 2010
3:00 pm

As someone who is just past the 18-29 (I’m 30)…I can tell you I’m very enthusiastic about the midterm elections…However, that’s not good news for Cynthia and Obama.

Also, I’m not in the minority…I know several people in my age range who did not vote in the Presidential election, but are definately voting in the midterms….again, not good for the Dems.

The Devil You Say

April 27th, 2010
3:05 pm

Robert – so you think that the youth of America should just give up their freedoms – both civil and economic – to fascists who confiscate businesses and use the federal treasury to buy votes? And how could anyone with Hitlary Clinton in his party dare call anyone ’shrill’? The only person who should be ashamed is a name caller like you. You still have a bad case of ‘Bush derangement syndrome.’

Road Scholar

April 27th, 2010
3:05 pm

Cynthia is… bless her heart!:”Obama saddles us with this huge HCare debt and now whines about needing a special blue ribbon bi-partisan commission to correct his mess. ”

If you remember, if you can, during the election Obama said that he wanted to examine all programs and policies to see which were working and which were not. He said that he would attempt to get rid of those which didn’t work or wasn’t needed anymore. John McCain (your guy) also said this! With such a convenient memory, I’m not surprised of anything that you say, being that it’s probably in error.

Kamchak

April 27th, 2010
3:05 pm

Yes, hopefully some of the “lemmings” will stay home.

Ah yes, the only acceptable form of representation is one when “my” lemmings count more.

Road Scholar

April 27th, 2010
3:09 pm

Devil: You left out communist and socialist in your post. Also muslim, chicago thug etc….

The Devil You Say

April 27th, 2010
3:11 pm

Robert – you did it for me. Thanks. However, you need to read a little history. I would recommend a few books, but I doubt that you have ever read one cover to cover, or else you wouldn’t make such hatefully ignorant statements.

The Devil You Say

April 27th, 2010
3:14 pm

BTW – I don’t believe that Obama is a Muslim. I think that he is an atheist who has used religion conveniently, as so many hypocrites in politics do. He, like Marx and Hitler, views it as an opiate.

JohnnyReb

April 27th, 2010
3:17 pm

Who made those famous remarks? Something along the line that the bigger problem is not Obama, but the people who voted him in office. Perhaps the “yuts” don’t want to be associated with the losers!

Union

April 27th, 2010
3:17 pm

“I think when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody.”

you say things like that.. who exactly are you grasping for votes from?

Stone Thrower

April 27th, 2010
3:21 pm

To: The Devil You Say
You sure not how to walk lock step with the FOX talking points

neo-Carlinist

April 27th, 2010
3:27 pm

Peadawg is right, this speaks to what it wrong in DC. pollsters, politicians and pundits crowning this politco or that as “most popular” like some H.S. newspaper contest. this isn’r American Idol or a beauty pagent. Leaders lead, and leave the popularity contests to the historians.

Scout

April 27th, 2010
3:28 pm

Kamchak:

Exactly. As a matter of fact, I prefer a system where voters who pay income taxes have their vote count more. Kind of like stockholers in a corporation. The more stock you own, the more your vote counts.

“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship.” Alexander Tyler

The march of the “lemmings” continues ………………….

Kamchak

April 27th, 2010
3:31 pm

As a matter of fact, I prefer a system where voters who pay income taxes have their vote count more.

There’s your sign.

JohnnyReb

April 27th, 2010
3:36 pm

Ugh Oh, Scout, you were doing good until favoring a system giving priority voting to certain individuals. Your purpose is good, but ALL legal citizens must have the vote regardless of situation (even the progressives, doggone it). What must be fixed is the Dems hell-bent efforts to put sufficient numbers on the Government Plantation that accomplishes the Tyler quoted situation.

Scooter (the Original)

April 27th, 2010
3:38 pm

Harsh reality most always grounds youthful idealism. Say, does anybody know where I can get one of those “Got Hope?” stickers?

I already have The Obama’s “Health Reform is a BFD” T-Shirt… it’s such a presidential statement!

StJ

April 27th, 2010
3:40 pm

The ones with a brain have figured out they’re about to be taxed to death for the rest of their lives. The rest are busy playing their XBoxes. Maybe if the Dems create a video game and then distribute it for free…

Union

April 27th, 2010
3:42 pm

I know a place where the youth voted all the time.. they now have shorter work weeks, longer vacations, benefits for life, the wealth is spread around.. :) How is that whole Greece thing working out anyways?

Scout

April 27th, 2010
3:44 pm

JohnnyReb:

Sorry, I said “count more”.

Of course everyone should have the right to vote but it’s insanity to have a productive citizen have their vote cancelled by someone who won’t get off the couch.

I assume you own stock? Do you want every stockholder to have one vote?

Peadawg

April 27th, 2010
3:45 pm

“but ALL legal citizens must have the vote regardless of situation”

I wouldn’t go that far. Atleast give them some kind of test or something to see that they even know where the candidates stand. This will help with the popularity contest voters.

Williebkind

April 27th, 2010
3:50 pm

I watched Glenn Beck yesterday and it was exciting. I sure did learn who is involved in Obams’s administration. Wow, it sounded like thugs from the 20’s. I got to make more time for Glenn. Check him out.

Williebkind

April 27th, 2010
3:51 pm

Peadawg

April 27th, 2010
3:45 pm
What about the dead people?

T-Town

April 27th, 2010
3:52 pm

When Obama put health care, where the young will have to buy in, and everything else before jobs and keeping people in their homes he turned off the very people who elected him. His “YES WE CAN” became “no we can’t” get a job or keep our home.

JohnnyReb

April 27th, 2010
3:53 pm

Scout and Peadawg – I confess I have had similar thoughts, but my conscious drew me back. I favor eliminating voter fraud including requiring some form of ID, plus would like the pee test in order to collect that government check or food stamps. But can’t support any kind of situation that would produce voter discrimination, even if someone is dummer than a rock.

Union

April 27th, 2010
3:53 pm

@ctucker.. why.. oh why.. cannot I get a link to work over here? they work fine on Jays blog.. :cry:

HDB

April 27th, 2010
3:57 pm

Williebkind

April 27th, 2010
3:50 pm
I watched Glenn Beck yesterday and it was exciting. I sure did learn who is involved in Obams’s administration…

Where was Beck, Limbaugh, and their ilk when we were noting who was in the Bush Administration…and how they looted the Treasury in wartime?? Greater level of thievery in my book…….

JohnnyReb

April 27th, 2010
3:58 pm

Union – I think Ms Tucker sends anything with a link to the hold file. At least I can’t get her thread to take mine when it has a link.

HDB

April 27th, 2010
3:58 pm

Union: CT has a block on links….space it out and it’ll come through!!

ctucker

April 27th, 2010
3:59 pm

JohnnyReb, The AJC has technology that blocks link. I’m not doing anything manually.

Independent

April 27th, 2010
4:01 pm

“Charmed and excited”, now that’s exactly why I vote for a particular candidate. I guess that goes along with a charming and exciting community organizer. Perhaps the young’uns who voted in 08 are maturing a bit and realizing that being told what to do, how to do it, what to buy, etc by the government is a lot like living at home with parents and don’t want any part of it.

JohnnyReb

April 27th, 2010
4:05 pm

Ms Tucker – thanks for the info. I will work on my technique as it appears others have managed to paste links.

T-Town

April 27th, 2010
4:06 pm

HDB, As an Independent who doesn’t give a damn right now who’s at fault, blaming Bush or anyone else doesn’t make scents. Obama knew going in things were bad and would probably get a lot worse before they get better, but wanted the job and has been in office for 16 months. The “It’s Bushs fault” just don’t fly anymore. Jobs and homes are what are most important to people and he hasn’t made these two problems a priority. Time is slipping by and so are his ratings.

HDB

April 27th, 2010
4:24 pm

T-Town: Wise man told me – you have to understand the past in order to plan for the future!! Obama has made jobs and homes a priority…but he’s addressing some of the underlying costs first in order to go after the larger issue. Health care costs are escalating faster than COLA…and many people are losing homes due to medical bankruptcies. If that is attacked…and the costs begin to decrease, that ‘ll affect the business capability to hire!!

Americans focus too much on short-tern results rather than long-term results!! Have to begin to look at things differently!!

When I compare my progression under Obama and Bush….I can HONESTLY say this: I’m doing MUCH better under Obama than I was uder Bush!! At least I was able to GET a decent job under Obama…whereas I LOST a decent job under Bush!!

Just sayin’……………

Scout

April 27th, 2010
4:26 pm

JohnnyReb:

Can’t sit by while the Republic is destroyed. Agree to disagree.

BTW ……… that’s a “strong” handle you use. Would you have stepped up to the plate in 1861?

jonathan gill

April 27th, 2010
4:28 pm

It’s surprising that Dems take us (young voters) for granted. Obama was a disappointment. Democrats act like they care about average American. Look at Barney Frank, Nancy Pelosi and scores of others. they are the ones who passed the stimulus package along with Obama so the banks can enrich themselves with tax payers money. Dems & Republicans are 2 side of the same coin, screwing Americans. This time is different. I’m a Independent.

Williebkind

April 27th, 2010
4:29 pm

HDB:
Well, what were they doing during Bush’s so called looting the treasury in wartime. I remember they were explaining whether he served not served in the national guard to avoid serving. Also, having to explain why the military costs so much after Billy downgraded the best military in the world. Then we got bombed. There was a lot of discussion about that. Then there was the supreme court nominees. Looting the treasure….like Obama’s healtcare or his immigration plan.

Ragnar Danneskjöld

April 27th, 2010
4:31 pm

Dear Johnny Reb @ 3:58, I have that problem at Kyle’s website. Don’t think it is an editorial issue, as I would just be a cheerleader over there, but I do know this AJC software has mysterious ways about it.

OBAMA 2012

April 27th, 2010
4:33 pm

Ragnar Danneskjöld – That was actually a $800 Make Work Tax CREDIT this year, plus Student CREDIT – my son the graduate student, got back 10 times more than he paid in and he’s back on my insurance at a saving of over $100 per month. Thank you President Obama!

CORRECTION – It’s Obama Derangement Syndrome – it runs rampant here every day! The memory of the years from 2000 to 2009 is suddenly gone – republicans have just discovered fiscal responsibility! Too late to save that TRILLION dollars wasted on the bush wars or the 4000+ American troops.