When you’re watching the candidates sparring on a debate stage, are you being entertained or informed? Do you believe the candidates are addressing the issues you’re most concerned about?
Chances are, the answer is no, especially if you’re a millennial.
Millennials have the potential to carry this year’s election for whichever candidate they choose. At 36%,
they make up the largest demographic of eligible voters. Problem is, they don’t feel that any of the candidates are addressing them or the issues they care about.
Approximately 85% of millennials surveyed said they feel ignored by the presidential candidates, according to a poll by GenFKD,
a non-partisan peer-to-peer organization that engages and educates millennials on economic and financial public policy and basic pocketbook finance.
There is no question that national security is currently the biggest issue facing our country, with homegrown terrorism and ISIL dominating headlines. Yet, the vast majority of Americans, especially millennials, are very uncertain about the current economy and odds of finding a job. The survey
found that 66% of recent college graduates are ‘uncertain’ or ‘not confident’ in the economy.
“It is very disappointing that the presidential candidates are ignoring a vital demographic group and the issues that matter most to millennials,” said Justin Dent, president and co-founder of GenFKD. “With an uncertain economy and international instability, millennials are more engaged than ever in the upcoming election, yet they are left out of the discussion.”
You’d think that at the recent CNN and Facebook-sponsored Republican Presidential Debate at the University of Colorado, millennial issues would be front and center. In actuality, there were minimal number of seats set aside for college students and no direct discussion of millennials or the issues impacting them.
Presidential candidates spend most of their debate time attacking one another, the current administration and making headline-grabbing statements. Millennials are an important enough demographic that candidates should focus on the issues that matter most to them, like finding a job when they graduate, paying off student debt and being able to afford healthcare.
"Millennials are clearly concerned about the economy they will inherit, and the opportunities available to them,” said Christopher Koopman of the Mercatus Institute
at George Mason University. “Unfortunately, political candidates have a strong incentive to support special interests over the causes that matter most to young people. There is a danger in doing that because millennials are concerned, active, and engaged.”
The Mercatus Center at George Mason University is a research center dedicated to bridging the gap between academic research and public policy problems. When it comes to business and the economy, the institute is closely monitoring the debates and impact the current presidential candidates will have on millennials.
These days, candidates have teams of pollsters monitoring every speech, tweet, comments and interaction. It’s surprising that with all the Intel and analytics that today’s candidates have, they’re still leaving out a very influential part of the voter-base.
In less than 10 years, millennials are expected to be the largest part of the workforce.
They do have a lot at stake in this year’s election, with an uncertain economy, security issues, climate change and health care debates, not to mention the concern about paying back student loans.
It’s time for the candidates, both Republican and Democrat, to start thinking about the demographic that could seal their fate and the future of our country.
is a national media personality, ‘recovering’ investment banker, dealmaker, investor, speaker and author of the New York Times bestselling book, The Entrepreneur Equation. To read more of her work, CLICK HERE NOW.
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