Younger Voters

Anti-Gay Candidates Push Away Younger Voters

The Republican Party is pushing away moderates, especially women and younger voters. The ultra-conservative fundamentalist Christian wing of the party may not be the largest group demographically, but Susan McGalla says they’re the loudest, and they’re making it difficult for moderates and centrists to be heard. They’re driving away not only voters, but politicians who believe in climate change like Governor Jon Huntsman or believe in bipartisanship like Senator Olympia Snowe.

One way the Republican Party can attract moderates, especially younger voters, is to change its stance on Gay marriage. According to the Gallup poll, a majority of Americans support Gay marriage, but 75% of Republicans are opposed to it. However, when young Republicans are asked, the percentages are different. According to Whit Ayres, founder and president of North Star Opinion Research, more than 60% of Republicans age 30 and under do support Gay marriage.

“We’re headed to the point,” Ayres predicted, “where a political candidate who is perceived as anti-Gay at the presidential level will never connect with people under 30 years old.”

Ayres pointed out that for a Republican candidate to win the White House, he (or she) would need “an attitude of inclusion and acceptance.”

Maybe it’s time for the Republicans to get back to the “big tent” philosophy.