I find it increasingly curious that President Obama treats the youth vote with such arrogance, apathy, and recklessness. Given that it was younger voters who handed the president his impressive win in 2008, you would think he would court them with greater inclusion. Yet in revealing his own version of a health care plan last week, the president sought to burden the “under 30” generation with seismic debt and simultaneously violated their sense of values, particularly on the issue of life.
President Barack Obama won the vote of the "under 30" generation in 2008 by a margin of roughly 40% over John McCain. In a race that ended up being decided by roughly 4% of the electorate, that is a huge margin for McCain to give away, and still expect to even have a shot at winning a national election. Perhaps now Obama is making a similar mistake.
In President Obama's stated plan for government take over our health care system, he has time and again insisted that those who are without health insurance will be forced to buy it. The president claims it's the only way to effectively offer price controls. But demanding universal participation adversely affects voters under the age of 30 the most. Here’s why--they tend to be healthier, and they tend to have less money.
In posting his proposed health manifesto online last week the president has also slapped the under 30 generation in the face on one of their core beliefs.
Last Tuesday Democratic Rep. Bart Stupak put it this way: "Unfortunately, the president's proposal encompasses the Senate language allowing public funding of abortion. The Senate language is a significant departure from current law and is unacceptable."
If a Congressional Democrat has come to that conclusion, imagine how it must strike the current college freshman and sophomore classes across America's university systems, which--according to several polling organizations--are trending stronger on the issue of protecting the lives of unborn children than both of the previous two generations before them.
At this time in history, with technology being more readily affordable and available, with social networks, Twitter feeds, and Facebook status updates all blasting seismic headlines in the blink of an eye, the youth of America are tuned in to the president's actions. To their surprise they are increasingly aware that while he used them to get elected, he has gone silent on allowing them to the table to be part of the discussion.
Unfortunately he's not the only one...
At this year's recent CPAC gathering I was easily reminded, over and over again, how energized the next generation is. I'm also reminded that the bureaucratically heavy-handed moves from inside the Beltway--especially from conservative organizations--continues to prevent the energetic, well-informed, and capable voices of center right youth to be heard.
This is one of the overriding reasons my business partner, the actor, Stephen Baldwin and myself started our nationally syndicated radio show. It is an even bigger reason why we hosted the XPACtm entertainment lounge at this year's CPAC events. The predictable leftist voices came out and dogged us on their blogs. The disdain from Gawker, Wonkette, and MSNBC's Keith Olbermann towards our goals and tactics became badges of honor. The several thousand under 30s that passed through the lounge to share their ideas with each other, and the media who curiously covered us, were well-served from an empowering atmosphere that told them they no longer had to wait in line to be part of the future of their nation.
If the silver sea of conservatives and Republicans wish to capitalize on the significant mistakes Obama is making in misreading and misleading the current youth generation, then they need to invite this energized demographic into the discussion, planning, and strategy for the future that awaits (primarily) them.
In years past CPAC scored average attendance of roughly 50% of registrations from people under 30. This year it was sixty-one percent.
I predicted in my prepared remarks to the CPAC faithful on Thursday, February 18 that it would be this generation of "under 30's" that would see the decline and fall of Roe v. Wade. That it's their generation who will be looking to make a difference first, and ask permission later.
This is no time for ego or for the expansion of political kleptocracy.
For the Democrats who have abused the “under 30” good will, notice is served.
But that also applies to former Reagan administration personnel who hold on too tightly to power inside Beltway think-tanks.
Empower them, encourage them, or get out of the way.
Otherwise you're part of the problem!
Kevin McCullough is a New York-based columnist and host of the nationally syndicated "Baldwin/McCullough Radio" now heard on 207 stations. He is also host of "The Kevin McCullough Show" weekdays 7a-9am ET on Sirius 161. He blogs at www.muscleheadrevolution.com. His second book "The Kind Of MAN Every Man SHOULD Be" is in stores now.
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