By 2020 more than one-third of voting age people will be Millennials. They tend to be liberal but 26% weren’t registered to vote and 32% didn’t vote in 2012, according to a 2014 national online interviews with 2,004 Millennials, ages 18 to 31 (56% white).[i] Only 8% were conservatives and 13% were cynics–the least likely to vote, while 44% felt closer to the Democrats (63% said they voted for Obama in 2012), 26% felt closer to the Republicans, and 19% said they had no party affiliation. The issues most important to them were making college more affordable, economic opportunity and background checks for gun sales. They believed government should be involved in solving these kinds of problems. Despite the legacy of the Recession of 2008, 70% were optimistic about their economic prospects for the next few years although what they worry about most is finding a good job. Only 39% thought they would be better off than their parents and 60% talk to their parents at least once a day. Most (87%) agreed, “It’s up to me if I succeed or fail.” The values they considered most important for the US were quality, opportunity, and personality responsibility. At the bottom of their values list were competition (7%) and patriotism (8%). Most of them (79%) thought young people have the power to change things although they agreed, “The system is rigged in favor of the rich” (71%). The survey researchers concluded that digital native Millennials (born 1981 to 2004) are “collaborative, tolerant, with high expectations.”
[i] “Understanding Millennials: Nationwide Survey,” Harstad Strategic Research, April 2014.