Why Do So Many Young People Vote Left?

Here are a couple of data points that suggest part of the answer, at least, is that they are remarkably ill-informed. First, a video in which students are asked whether they favor Medicare for all. Of course they do! Then they are told a few basic facts about the Sanders proposal, now widely adopted by Democratic politicians, all of which come as a surprise. (“What, you have to pay for it?”) Still, in the end they are at best ambivalent:


Next, an article from the Minnesota Daily, the student newspaper at the University of Minnesota: “Amid fears of recession, UMN students split on economy.”

As economists speculate on the probability of an impending recession…

Probability! Impending!

…students feel uncertain about future financial prospects.

Only 8 percent of students who participated in the study rated the current state of the U.S. economy as “very good.”

In fact, it probably is the best economy in U.S. history, certainly one of the best. But for some reason, young people aren’t getting the message.

Forty-six percent rated it as “good,” and 17 percent rated it as either “bad” or “very bad.” Meanwhile, 30 percent of students surveyed rated the current economy neither good nor bad.

To say that today’s economy is bad is irrational, and can only be explained by Trump Derangement Syndrome or, perhaps, Marxism.

“It’s scary looking at a possible failing economy when it’s me on the line and I have to pay for all of this with little to no confidence in a solid future,” [Hailey] Zeissler said.

Rarely, if ever, in history have students graduated into such a promising environment. But over the next year, 48 percent of University of Minnesota students said they expect the economy to get worse, while only 19 percent expect it to get better.

Sure, it’s two random data points. But a great deal of observation leads me to think that in general, America’s college students are 1) woefully uninformed, and 2) systematically misled, in part by their schools but mostly by the culture in which they live.

A final observation: it would be interesting to do the same poll at Minnesota’s trade and technical schools, where Trump Derangement Syndrome is rare and graduating students are besieged with high-paying job offers. I suspect the results would be quite different.

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