Millennials: Liberal or Conservative? It Depends on the Issue and Where They Live

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millennials
Courtesy of ITU Pictures (Flickr CC0)

In 2024, millennials, ages roughly 25-40, will be the largest voting bloc in America. With an average age of 38.2 in America, this is completely understandable. If the majority of this demographic, combined with the most active voting bloc, women, support one candidate, she or he would be swept into victory. It is therefore important to learn if these two groups favor a more progressive or conservative agenda. This is where it becomes complicated.

millennials
Courtesy of Sherwood411 (Flickr CC0)

Studies have shown that millennials are both progressive and conservative, depending on two factors: the issue itself, and where they live. For me, this sounds like the way America should be. To make it more difficult to appeal to the majority of the men and women who control our nation’s future are their choices to refuse to belong to groups or organizations which support one party over the other. Most consider themselves Independents. Although Democrats are slightly more popular than Republicans, their loyalties are divided. Another important difference is the fact that most millennials chose not to embrace their parent’s religious beliefs or their need for physical possessions.

Where they live affects their beliefs and ideas. This is not a state-by-state issue, it is by area. Millennials who live in the Midwest and the deep South tend to be more conservative. Those who live in the West and East, especially in larger cities, are more progressive. However, recent studies reveal that as they age, they are more likely to move into more suburban and even rural areas. The cost of living in cities like New York, Boston, Atlanta, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, and even Portland and Seattle is not sustainable for most.

millennials
Courtesy of Conservatives (Flickr CC0)

Overall, millennials tend to be more liberal about social issues, including universal healthcare, free higher education, immigration, fair taxation, women’s rights, the rights of the LGBTQ community, and an end to racism in America. They are more conservative when the issues are related to fiscal policy, and issues involved in the Bill of Rights, with the exception of banning most guns from our country, aligning themselves with their younger brothers and sisters, “generation “Z.” Both those leaning to the right and left support freedom of or the right to reject, religion. The truth is that the fastest-growing religion in America is “none,” and new converts to established religions frequently favor the religion of Islam. Christianity is in decline.

The way to reach both millennials and women is simple. In your ads and contained in your speeches, and if applicable, in debates, focus on the issues important to most Americans and offer the truth about your position on those issues. No attack ads. No lies. No conspiracy theories. No personal attacks on your critics. Whether or not you believe the following or not, “the truth lives here,” and I promise you that younger Americans smell bullshit from a mile away.

When you are asking for their votes, throw away the idea of “political correctness.” You are not speaking to a liberal or a conservative, or even a Democrat or a Republican. You are speaking to an American voter who wants to be noticed and heard. They know what they need and want from our politicians, so stop trying to tell them what they think and believe. They don’t need or want you to brainwash them. They don’t watch Fox News.

Professional politicians won’t understand this. Term limits PLEASE.

By James Turnage, Novelist

Sources:

The Guardian: Progressives are a minority in America. To win, they need to compromise
Pew Research: Liberals make up the largest share of Democratic voters, but their growth has slowed in recent years
Newsweek: Millennials Are a Lot Less Progressive Than You Think

Top and Featured Image Courtesy of ITU Pictures‘ Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
First Inset Image Courtesy of Sherwood411‘s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Second Inset Image Courtesy of Conservatives‘ Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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