Politics and Youth

Archive Report

Youth Involvement in American Politics

American youth has injected new uncertainties into politics this election year and in the foreseeable future, regardless of whether the voting age is lowered to 18 across the nation. Party leaders, Democrat and Republican, cannot erase from mind the student volunteers in the 1968 McCarthy campaign who moved the anti-war feeling of the campus into the precinct and by doing so helped to force President Johnson into retirement. But politicians are also aware that many young voters may be more conservative than is generally assumed.1

Seven million college students form the biggest bloc of new and potential voters and are considered the most mercurial politically. They show far less attachment to the political process. A key question is how many will ...

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