Pew Research: Young Liberals To Dominate Future Of U.S. Politics
While the 2014 elections may be favoring the Republican party, a new Pew Research study has some encouraging data for progressives and liberals, reflecting a growing electorate that is quickly evolving on many social issues. The data could spell real trouble for conservatives who steadfastly continue to allow religious views to drive their political agendas.
Using data from a Pew Research Center survey conducted Feb. 14-23, 2014 among 1,821 adults nationwide that examines the trends and ideological beliefs of Millennials – those now ranging in age from 18 to 33, – the study highlights some startling and very encouraging findings. Included in the findings is the revelation that, although a full half of those surveyed identified themselves as political independents (a record high),
“…Millennials stand out for voting heavily Democratic and for liberal views on many political and social issues, ranging from a belief in an activist government to support for same-sex marriage and marijuana legalization.”
In an article about the study, the New Yorker Magazine – while correctly pointing out that white conservative voters are literally dying off – uses the following graphic to illustrate the stark differences by race of how voters view the role of government, writing;
Conservatives have a double problems with millennial voters. The first is that they’re much less white than older voters, which means that, as time goes on, Republicans would need to get much higher voting margins among millennial whites merely to stay even. But the second problem is that millennial whites have more liberal views than older whites. Support for smaller government polls in the +40-to-+50 range among Generation X and Baby Boomer whites, but only +13 among millennial whites. Universal health insurance polls at around -20 points among older whites, but only -10 among millennial whites.
Pew also notes that, in what may be helping shape and cement their ideological views, Millennials are at the leading edge of embracing digital mediums such as “the internet, mobile technology, social media… to construct personalized networks of friends, colleagues and affinity groups.”
Other key statistics are just as telling. Consider that 50% of Millennials consider mixed-race marriages a “good thing for American society,” while only 33% of Baby Boomers hold the same view. Additionally, 35% of Millennials view gay and lesbian couples raising children as a positive for society, as opposed to just 21% of their Boomer counterparts.
On religion, only 36% of Millennials considered themselves “religious.” This is a sharp decline in just one generation – as 52% of Generation X’er’s considered themselves religious, as did 55% of Baby Boomers.
In light of these findings, it stands to reason that if the Republican party and its neo-conservative Tea Party faction continues its push towards theocratic governance, it just may well be on its last gasps of relevance. One can hope, anyway.
You can view the entire Pew report in a PDF HERE.
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