I'm not at all convinced that the Dems did their homework or got their money's worth from the youth (18-29-y-o) voters this general election.
In our results jabbering, Lynne and I disagree on this. We often do; I see her as starting from the small details and expanding to bigger ideas, while I tend to start at the abstracts and work in. In our Left Ahead! podcast, Lynne buys into the blog/MSM meme that the two million new youngish voters means they were a big factor and likely to continue voting (and left).
Also see the Salon analysis of the relatively weak influence of this bloc.
- They didn't even keep pace with the percentage of other age groups. Everyone grew, but the youth at a lower rate.
- More shocking, the percentage and absolute increases in this group from 2000 to 2004 was higher. Moreover, a greater percentage voted — 19.4 of the total in 2004 and only 18% this time.
- On the other hand, they went for the right guy much more — 66% for Obama this time and 54% for Kerry last.
I put that to the Democratic Party, and any other party that looks to future elections. There's a clear and even trend to more conservative votes by age. This time, for example, the 60 and overs went 52% to 46% for McCain. They were also 23% of the vote. More telling, those on the cusp of this group, the 45 through 59s were split at 49% and made up the largest bloc by age, 30%.
Getting a relatively few younger voters to the polls was barely good enough and may not be in the next Presidential election. The Republicans will likely be mad and hungry.
Tags: massmarrier, youth vote, voters, Democrats