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Americans who turned 18 just in time to vote in 1972, the first year 18-year-olds could cast ballots in a presidential election, celebrated their 56th birthdays this year. They are more than twice as likely to vote in November as those who turned 18 just in time to cast ballots in 2008. Indeed, if 18-to-29-year-olds repeat the historically lackdaisical mid-term voting pattern of their age group, it could be bad news for Democrats at a time when the party doesn't need any more of it. While voter turnout this year among Democrats of all age demographics is subject to the much-discussed, much-disputed "enthusiasm gap," that gap seems to be higher among young people than those 30 and older.

The Obama administration is campaigning hard to overcome this by courting young voters, especially college students, seeking to restore the fervor that helped solidify victory for the Democrats in 2008. On Oct. 14, as part of this effort, the President will host a "youth town hall" on MTV, MTVu, BET, Centric, TR3s and CMT. Vice President Joe Bidenis doing his part, too.  

Because the target demographic, the "Millennials" born 1980-1992, tend to be more liberal on many issues than older voters, the outcome of this get-out-the-young-vote campaign could have a major impact on Democratic fortunes well beyond 2010 and perhaps determine how liberal the future Democratic Party will be. Not since the "Greatest Generation," comprising young adults during World War II, has any generation been so solidly identified with Democrats and liberal attitudes. Young voters are more diverse racially and ethnically than older voters, more secular in their religious views, more open to immigrants, more open to non-traditional family arrangements, more likely to do volunteer work, and less supportive of interventionist foreign policy. If Millennials were the only Americans casting ballots this year, it would be a clean sweep for Democrats. But obstacles abound in getting them to the polls.

The message the administration has been delivering since the President's conference call to student journalists Sept. 27 and the next day's rally of 26,000 mostly young people in Madison, Wisc., was in evidence Friday when Obama  spoke at Bowie State University, an historically black university in Maryland:

What the other side is counting on … is that this time around you're going to stay home. They're counting on your silence. They're counting on amnesia. They're counting on your apathy, especially the young people here. They don't believe you're going to come out and vote. They figure Obama's not on the ballot, you're not going to come out and vote. Maryland, you've got to prove them wrong.

Whether they will is unclear. Three recent polls, commissioned by Rock the Vote, by ABC/Washington Post and by the Pew Research Center for People & the Press came up with very different numbers on this score. Seventy-seven percent of young Americans told Rock the Vote they are certain they will vote this year, 55 percent told ABC/Post pollsters they will, and 45 percent told Pew the same.

Whatever their intentions, however, it would be a miracle if young people actually made a showing anywhere close to the numbers indicated even in the Pew poll. The highest-ever under-30 voter turnout in a mid-term election was 31 percent in 1982. Most recently, in 2006, only 25.5 percent of Americans under 30 voted, and that was an improvement over the two previous mid-term elections. The answer to whether those numbers can be improved further is an extremely tentative maybe. Only a prodigious effort in the next three weeks could make it happen.

As can be seen in the charts below, young adults have always tended to vote in far lower percentages than those age 30 and older. The median level of the youth vote in the past nine presidential elections was 21 points below that of older voters. But the median level of the young adult vote in mid-term elections was 29 points less than for the older population.

Presidential Elections Voters 18-to-29  Voters over 30
197251.1% 70.1%
197644.2%68.4%
198049.1%69.1%
198448.0%70.2%
198844.0%69.1%
199251.0%72.0%
199639.6%64.0%
200040.2%65.4%
200449.1%68.3%
200851.1%67.1%

Mid-Term Elections   Voters 18-to-29  Voters over 30
197429% 54.0%
197829%58.0%
198232%60.3%
198628%58.1%
199027%57.6%
199426%55.0%
199822%52.3%
200222%52.1%
200626%54.2%

As noted, young voters are, on average, more liberal than older ones. In the past three elections - 2004, 2006, and 2008 - voters under 30 have given the Democratic Party a majority of their votes. Indeed, they have been the party's most supportive age group. In 2008, the 2-1 margin they gave Barack Obama over John McCain marked a disparity larger than in any presidential election since exit polling began in 1972.

However, since the under-30 cohort comprised slightly less than one-fifth of all voters in 2008, the only way to leverage the more liberal electoral impact of youth is to spur them to support candidates by lopsided margins, which is what they did in 2008 by voting for Obama. But, while he remains popular among young voters, he is not on the ballot, and the election is far more local than in a presidential election year. That doesn't mean he can't have an impact. For one thing, half of young people say they are more likely to support a candidate endorsed by President Obama.

But in terms of the local nature of mid-term elections, it should be remembered that while the under-30 voter turnout rose 2 percentage points nationwide in 2008, that rise was geographically uneven. The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement, the Tufts University project that tracks and analyzes the youth vote, points out that no increase took place in the majority of states. According to CIRCLE Director Peter Levine:

“This midterm election the youth voter turnout could also vary widely state-by-state depending on the number and intensity of statewide and local elections. … We saw this before in the 2006 midterms when the national youth voter turnout was 26 percent, but in Minnesota it was 43 percent due to the hotly contested governor’s race, but only 17 percent in Texas, Utah, and West Virginia.”

Heather Smith, president of Rock the Vote, says there is still a chance to engage young voters:

"If the candidates running for office in a number of these states with competitive races actually invest in young people and can follow up on the momentum created by the president's rallies on campuses around the country, it will have a huge impact," she says. "But the candidates have to take the baton and run with it."

Turnout, however, isn't the only problem. Young voters do not favor the Democratic Party as much as they do Barack Obama. A Rock the Vote poll released in mid-September found that 34 percent of adults age 18 to 29 said they wanted Democrats to keep control of Congress, while 28 percent favored a switch to Republicans. But a plurality of 36 percent said they didn't think it matters which party wins. An NDN survey in June found similar attitudes.

The first sign of disaffection from the Democrats was chronicled by Pew back in February. Between late 2008 and late 2009, the Democratic edge over Republicans in party affiliation among young voters, including those who "lean" toward one party or another, had shrunk from a 32-point margin to just 14 points.

But a Pew survey in early September showed some movement in the other direction. Now 56 percent of Millennials identify as or lean Democratic while 36 percent identify as, or lean, Republican, a 20-point margin. Among those age 30 and older, that margin is only one point, 46 percent identifying with the Democrats, or leaning that way, and 45 percent identifying with, or leaning toward, the Republicans. In 2008, the Democratic lead among those older age groups was 50 percent to 40 percent. So, despite the slippage, the differences between the two age groups remain wide.

Attitudinally, that's true as well.

In early September surveys of Millennials by the New Policy Institute in Colorado and Florida, interviewers found that nearly half of Colorado Millennials and four in 10 Florida Millennials themselves liberal or progressive. The numbers are higher for women, Latinos and African Americans, lower for whites and men.

Party attitudes and ideological alignment for Millennials surveyed in Florida and Colorado can be seen in a chart here.

Young voters in Florida prefer Democrats narrowly in the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races and by a wide margin on the Congressional generic ballot. Colorado Millennials favor Democratic candidates in all key races. But in both states there are significant numbers of undecided young voters.

Ideological viewpoints of Millennials in those two states are similar to those in September's nationwide Pew survey.

Among white Millennials, party affiliation is nearly evenly divided (46% Democratic, 45% Republican). Among non-white Millennials, the Democratic Party enjoys an overwhelming 75%-to-17% advantage, nearly as large as in 2008 (when it was 78% to 14%). …

Millennials, in addition to being more socially liberal, tend to see government as more effective than older generations. While they are not necessarily more supportive than their elders of broad social safety net programs, they are substantially more supportive of government regulation, affirmative action and less likely to accuse the government of being wasteful and inefficient. In this regard, Millennials are the only age group in which more voters prefer a bigger government providing more services than a smaller government providing fewer services.

One potential bright spot in an election in which it's-the-economy-stupid is that Millennials are more upbeat than older generations about the economy, and are far more likely to believe it is improving or it soon will. This is the case in spite of the fact that someone in their household or they themselves are 11 percent more likely than the overall population to have been out of a job and looking for work in the past year.

On other specifics relevant to this year's election:

• 67 percent oppose modifying the 14th Amendment to eliminate birthright citizenship for the children of undocumented immigrants. Among older generations, 51 percent favor the change.

• 34 percent want to let all of the Bush 2001 tax cuts to expire. An additional 26 percent favor letting the tax cuts expire for those earning more than $250,000 but remain in place for other Americans. Among older Americans, 26 percent favor ending all the tax cuts, while a plurality of 30 percent want all of them to remain in force.

• 52 percent oppose replacing Medicare with vouchers to allow Medicare recipients to buy their own private health care insurance.

• 53 percent favor allowing gays and lesbians to marry. Among Baby Boomers, 52 percent are opposed, and among the Greatest Generation, 71 percent are opposed.

In the long run, all this would seem to be a good omen for liberals. Research over the past half century shows that "once political identifications and attitudes are formed in early adulthood, they tend to solidify and remain constant for a lifetime." That gives hope to liberals in those generations where they make up, at best, a fourth of the total demographic. After all, the Millennials who made up 18 percent of the 2008 electorate will account for 24 percent of it in 2012 and 36 percent in 2020 when the youngest Millennials come of voting age. On some issues, at least, they seem destined to push the Democratic Party leftward.

If, that is, they vote. In an election where their turnout could mean the difference in some races crucial to keeping ever-more extremist Republicans from regaining control of Congress and of state legislatures where redistricting may be the hottest item on the 2011 agenda, that's a mighty big if.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 01:59 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Feingold truly needs the students (20+ / 0-)

    to show up on election day.

    WI has same day registration.

    I'm not a witch - I'm you.

    by Pierro Sraffa on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:08:08 PM PDT

  •  make it mandatory to vote (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CoolOnion, Winnie
  •  HIR included keeping young folks on (10+ / 0-)

    their parent's  policies until 26, but not sure how many see that as valuable enough to motivate them to get to the polls.

    Use that to GOTV!   Educate about that. and about Republican's call to repeal the law.

  •  are there set ups for (10+ / 0-)

    serving as transportation for students to places where they can vote at most schools? In 2008, I know there was in the college town in which I lived, but I don't know about this time around.

    I also think we should be reminding students right now about absentee balloting--listservs should be pummeled with different state websites where students can learn about absentee balloting.

    As a college prof, I also usually let my students off of class on election day and tell them all multiple times to vote as soon as they're able in their state.

    I hope that turnout exceeds expectation!!

  •  The answer to your question is right in there. . (17+ / 0-)

    The second table, mid-term turnout 18-29
    1982.

    31%

    The highest of all of the mid-term, but 10 years after the 18 over vote began.

    10% higher than the best preceding mid-term numbers for 18-29.

    Almost a third more than the average of the 2000 mid-terms.

    Why? The Reagan Recession. The worst it has been for young people coming out of college and those just getting into the work force, until now. It is demonstrable that young voters will vote their economics just like everyone else. And, as much as the GOPers love to whistle past the graveyard, they know the 18-29 cohort will not vote Republican because they find the GOP social agenda abhorrent.

    So, that vote is the wild card. The LVs all are based on a 22-25% turnout. If it comes up to the 31% of 1982 the Republican tide will be turned and control of the House and Senate will Democratic.

    It is the ONE thing that keeps Karl Rove up at night. They know they have lost the Millenial vote, but they are praying to God to give them at least one more election where young votes do not matter. Karl, may have run out of spiffs from the Fates.

  •  Only their poll worker will know for sure ! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades, chrississippi, Matt Z

    "Vote And GOTV"&"So GOTV like mad." Kos

    by indycam on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:20:11 PM PDT

  •  I was SO EXCITED to vote in 1976. (17+ / 0-)

    My birthday just missed the cut-off for age 18 in 1974.

    I subscribed to Time Magazine and the newly published Mother Jones magazine.  (Did you know Michael Moore was an editor?)  I talked to both of my parents-- Mom was a Republican and Dad was a Democrat.  

    I took it so seriously. It was a huge adult privilege.  I don't believe I have ever missed voting in an election.

    In the phone bank I started this week this 19 year old guy joined us.  He didn't say much during the opening training, and tended to read from the script, so I couldn't tell how he felt about the work.  He went outside to answer his cell phone and came back in chortling, "I just talked my friend into voting!"  and we gave him high fives all around.  That felt great.

    FDR: The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
    RNC: The only thing we have is fear.

    by smileycreek on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:25:50 PM PDT

  •  Also new 2008 African American & Hispanic voters (14+ / 0-)

    I could be wrong but everywhere you write young people I'd add African Americans and Hispanics.

    Black, Hispanic and Asian voters made up nearly a quarter of the electorate, setting a record.

    The analysis, by the Pew Research Center, also found that for the first time, black women turned out at a higher rate than any other racial, ethnic and gender group.

    The study attributed the findings to several factors beyond the obvious one: Barack Obama’s candidacy. For instance, the number of eligible Hispanic voters has soared by more than 21 percent since 2004, a reflection of population gains and growing numbers of Hispanics who are citizens. Their share of eligible voters increased to 9.5 percent, from 8.2 percent four years earlier. In 2008, for the first time, the share of white non-Hispanic eligible voters fell below 75 percent.

    "What this report demonstrates is a pretty potent one-two punch of demographic change and behavioral change," said Paul Taylor, executive vice president of the Pew Research Center. "The white share of the overall vote has been stepping down pretty steadily for 20 years."

    Btw, I'm proud to day that since my first vote in 1972, a month after my 18'th b'day, I've never missed a local or national election. Anybody who's ever been under that proverbial bus, whether thrown or born under those wheels, at the very least, ought to be at the polls each and every election day.  

    "People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy," Bruce Wayne in Batman Begins.

    by kck on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:27:36 PM PDT

  •  Awesome. Bring on the younger generation. (6+ / 0-)
    Blue dogs take note.  Reach out to those young progressives!
  •  Know what will restore my fervor? (11+ / 0-)

    Less grandstanding, whining and selling out by Democrats, more legislative results.  

    They had a damn supermajority and literally wasted it trying to court the middle.  I hope hanging up on them when they called asking me for $200 the other day made an impact on them.  Probably not though. I feel bad for the volunteer.

  •  ROCK The Vote uses ONline, Cells and Landlines (7+ / 0-)

    some where I read that the standard pollsters only do landlines because cell phone polls cost more to do, and the voters don't really vote in the cell phone market

    "This year, Rock the Vote is running our most aggressive midterm election campaign in history with the goal of registering 200,000 young people, which will quadruple our 2006 registration levels by focusing primarily on newly-eligible voters and those who have moved since the 2008 election. Through our online voter registration tool, mobile marketing, on-
    the-ground registration at festivals and college campuses, an online voter information center and voter guides, and get-out-the-vote events, we are reaching out, building on the energy and activism of young adults, and empowering them to make their voices heard.
    The full Rock the Vote 2010 Young Voter Poll and analyses from The Tarrance Group and Anzalone Liszt Research are available at www.rockthevote.com.
    The survey was designed by both Anzalone Liszt Research and The Tarrance Group and administered by Anzalone Liszt Research using professional interviewers. The survey reached 1,000 young adults (18-29) nationwide. The base sample of 1,000 interviews nationwide included 200 respondents reached on cell phones, 500 respondents reached on landlines, and 300 who completed the survey online. The survey was conducted August 24- 30, 2010. Telephone numbers for the survey were drawn using random digit dial (RDD). The data were weighted slightly by region, race, party identification, and phone usage in order to ensure that it more accurately reflects the population. The margin of error for the survey is around +/- 3.7 percentage points, based off of the 800 telephone interviews.
    *NOTE: Exit polling data indicates that in 2006, the voter turnout rate among 18-to-29- year-olds increased 3 percentage points more than 2002 levels, going from 22 percent to 25 percent, and breaking a trend in declining electoral participation among young people since 1982. An estimated 10.8 million young people voted, an increase of almost 2 million voters. (Data from CIRCLE.)
    ###
    About Rock the Vote www.rockthevote.com Rock the Vote engages young people in our democracy and builds their political power by registering, educating and turning them out to vote, by forcing the candidates to campaign to them, and by making politicians pay attention to youth and the issues they care about once in office. For 20 years, we have used music, popular culture, new technologies and old-fashioned grassroots organizing to engage and mobilize young people to participate in every election. By providing them with the information and tools they need since 1990, Rock the Vote has registered more than 5 million young people, including more than 2.5 million in the historic 2008 election. In 2010, Rock the Vote seeks to register 200,000 young voters as part of the largest midterm elections outreach strategy in our organization's history. "
    from Rockthevote website.

    Paper ballots hand counted at least localize the hacking. Voting machines are DESIGNED to be hacked. Nothing matters if Crooked vote.

    by dosaybe on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:32:18 PM PDT

  •  Uof I in Iowa City is seeing huge student voting (15+ / 0-)

    so far.

    Early voting stats:

    After one week of early voting, Johnson County is on track for a higher early turnout than the midterm election four years ago, according to the Johnson County Auditor’s Office.

       More than 6,400 absentee ballots have been requested for the Nov. 2 general election, which is about 1,000 more than were requested in 2006 by this time.

       A total of 1,319 votes were cast at a satellite location at Burge Residence Hall on Tuesday. That is the most votes ever cast at a satellite location in Johnson County, Slockett said.

    More proof the Iowa students are engaged.

       I think it’s clear that students are driving the early, in-person voting here in Johnson County," said county Auditor Tom Slockett.

       Any Iowa City voter could have cast a ballot at Burge on Tuesday, so it’s not as if every vote came from a student. But Slockett said Wednesday the majority of all those who have voted so far in this year’s election have been of the student-age population. (There were 340 voters at the UI’s Phillips Hall on Monday.)

       Early voting will continue up until Election Day, Nov. 2. Most of the satellite sites are on or near the UI campus due to a record number of student-driven petitions to place satellite voting locations on campus.

    President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

    by askew on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:35:00 PM PDT

  •  The best thing for the Democrats (9+ / 0-)

    will be for the Democratic Party to move on from 2010's election with an eye on becoming a far more institutionally partisan organization from top to bottom.

    The Demographics are there for decades of Democratic dominance. The party that can grab the reigns of opportunity presented by the demographics isn't. Yet.

    I think the lesson of 2006-2010 is that 2006-2010 was the Third-Way Reasonable Centrist's practical case to the rest of the Party for their being in the position of being the most dominant force in the party. The people guiding how the party meets the dual challenge of the Village and the Movement Conservative Rightwing.

    The country is demographically screaming for an aggressive Democratic Party to capture longterm and large majorities in the House and Senate.

    I think more liberal policy will be a feature of a more partisan party.

  •  I start (13+ / 0-)
    with the two young adults who live at my house - my kids.

    Early voting starts tomorrow, and I will be badgering them until they vote.  Then I will start badgering them to badger their friends to make sure they vote.   A couple of those friends don't have cars, so we'll be driving them over.

    I think between my 2 kids and their friends, we can manage to get about a dozen to the polls.

    Oh, we also badger the kid's friends to badger their parents, all of whom I believe usually vote Dem.

    Since I have to work on Nov 2, this is about the best I can do to gotv on that day.

    This is not a book (Atlas Shrugged) to be tossed aside lightly. It should be thrown, with great force. - Dorothy Parker

    by edwardssl on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:38:10 PM PDT

  •  I was at an OFA training (6+ / 0-)

    that featured a very charismatic student activist for the local University.  When he was asked about how people his age viewed politics, he said that about campus it was very cool to mock over-the-top Republican candidates like Palin.  Humorous graffiti was even scrawled in the usual places.

    But politics in general, and voting in particular, was generally considered less cool overall among his cohorts.

    One young person's observation.

    FDR: The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
    RNC: The only thing we have is fear.

    by smileycreek on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 02:47:35 PM PDT

  •  I wonder if that link (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    professorbli

    in your next to last paragraph is the one you meant it to be.

    I ask because I have been looking for back-up to refute the idea that people get more conservative as they get older. A while ago I saw something that sounds like your quote...

    once political identifications and attitudes are formed in early adulthood, they tend to solidify and remain constant for a lifetime.

    ...but now I can't find it. Unless I missed something, it wasn't in the article you linked.

    •  my own research (4+ / 0-)

      This isn't about political ideology, but research published in Journal of Applied Psychology by a colleague and me found that, over time, people's attitudes toward women's equality become less conservative--and men's attitudes change even more quickly.

      There haven't really been many--if any--within-individual studies of political ideology, though I do think that many concur that the age effect of conservative ideology is a cohort effect and not really an "age" effect.

  •  we've been ruled by Zombie Reagan all our lives (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder

    Does that kind of institutional inertia fuel organized revolutionary passion or reveal a irredeemably corrupt system and suggest the hippies' strategy of "dropping out"?

    I don't remember Clinton, only W; the stories I've heard of Clinton are told with the benefit of hindsight, so they're fairly even-handed even if they do slant positive as a whole. We knew where we stood with W, and for all the bad things that happened during those 8 dark years, I can't say we were ever caught off guard. Many of us certainly feel betrayed by Obama; maybe that was our own fault - we were so desperate to close the page on W that we projected our own hopes and dreams onto Obama and blinded ourselves to the awesome power of institutionalized conservatism.

    •  I don't feel betrayed (6+ / 0-)

      by Obama. He has been a successful President. This Congress has passed more historic legislation than any Congress in 40 years. The people I feel betrayed by are Congressional Republicans, who have used the last 2 years to do absolutely nothing except vote No and obstruct every bill that could move America forward.

      •  Consider adding the Dems who (0+ / 0-)

        voted the Senate rules in to your list of who betrayed you?

        •  Nope (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          wishingwell, Auriandra, flhiii88

          I don't want the rules changed so 50 or 55 votes can end a filibuster. Because at some point if Democrats are in the minority again, we will get royally fucked and have no one to blame but ourselves. There is a reason Republicans didn't change it when they had the chance. They knew they would soon be out of power.

          I refuse to blame Democrats for the lock-step Republican obstruction in the Senate! I know who to blame, dammit! I wish you and yours did.

          •  Perhaps you should read up on this a little? (0+ / 0-)

            David Waldman, Dailykos Front Pager/ guru on congressional rules:

            Fear filibuster reform could come back to bite you? Bite first!   by David Waldman

            Psst. Hey, we are both Dems, and that's the way you and I are going to vote.

            Please don't be so lockstep yourself:

            I refuse to blame Democrats for the lock-step Republican obstruction in the Senate! I know who to blame, dammit! I wish you and yours did.

            In reality, the choices made on the Senate rules gave those Republicans the power they have to obstruct.

            If you cannot see that, I can't help you.

            •  Actually I am aware (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              flhiii88

              of all those arguments. I disagree with them. Republicans will not get rid of the filibuster if they get a Senate majority. They are all aware of what it is like to be in the minority party and they don't want to give up that power to control the debate.

              All the liberal bomb-throwers who want to end the filibuster (seems like most on this site unfortunately) are the same ones who would cry the loudest when Republicans take advantage of it to pass all kinds of regressive legislation. Oops, didn't see that coming. Well, I can see it coming.

              •  The liberal bomb-throwers... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                divineorder

                include a substantial portion of the Senate Democratic Caucus.

                I'm just guessing, but I think if you were in a room with them, you wouldn't call them that.

                Do be aware, though, that not everyone who advocates for filibuster reform advocates "to end the filibuster."

                Believe it or not, there are more people who see things coming than just FreeStateDem.

                •  FDR and LBJ (0+ / 0-)

                  both had more than 60 Democrats in the Senate. It can be done. In my opinion, the desire to reduce the number needed for cloture is short-sighted. It used to be that 67 were needed!

                  People are frustrated with the inability of the current Senate to pass what people consider to be more progressive legislation. All we need is 1 or 2 more Democratic Senators (How about Maine?) and this would not be an issue. No one would be talking about this at all if WE were in the minority. We would be trying to stop the Republicans from doing it.

                  •  And things are absolutely no different? (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    divineorder, FreeStateDem

                    There's been no evolution in the nature of Senate politics at all since FDR?

                    Really?

                    That's some statement.

                    There were a total of four cloture motions filed during the entire Roosevelt administration, and about 14 during the entire Johnson administration.

                    There have been 123 in the first two years of the Obama administration.

                    The nature of the filibuster has changed dramatically since those days. For one thing, it no longer actually requires your continued physical presence on the floor. For another, it's no longer limited to use for preventing the progress of bills and nominations that Senators actually oppose. Instead, it's used as a matter of course, to delay the passage even of bills that are supported overwhelmingly -- the idea being that by consuming more floor time in passing cloture motions by votes of 99-0, there's less floor time available for the passage of anything else.

                    Yes, it used to be that there were 67 needed to invoke cloture.

                    And. They. Changed. It.

                    And no one would be talking about this at all if we were in the minority? Who was in the minority in 1995 when Tom Harkin and Joe Lieberman cosponsored the proposed rules change to gradually reduce the number of votes needed to invoke cloture?

                    You're not even looking at the basic history of cloture and how the rule has been changed over time. You're going to have to do that if you want to try to invoke it in defense of your position.

                    •  I looked into (0+ / 0-)

                      Tom Harkin's 1995 proposal. I trust and respect Tom Harkin. His plan to gradually reduce the number of votes needed for cloture after a bill is introduced makes more sense than what I have heard from anyone else. His plan was to require 57 votes after two weeks had passed, 54 votes after a few more weeks, etc. That is a logical proposal that could preserve the minority party's ability to control debate, while at the same time not completely ending the prospect that a particular piece of legislation could pass given enough time. It is a reasonable proposal.

                      So, thank you for informing me about Harkin's plan. If more people were interested in talking about more nuanced approaches such as this then perhaps I would not have taken the approach that I did. All I hear from 99% of the people on this site about the filibuster is that they want to "end it".

                      •  Great! (0+ / 0-)

                        Now there's something you can get behind, so that's good news.

                        There are a couple of good proposals floating around, but the first step is to make sure Senators take advantage of the opportunity to make a change, and that they be convinced of the propriety of doing so.

          •  Once they do away w gerrymandering and primary (0+ / 0-)

            abuses, then they can change the filibuster. Til then, like Obiwon Kenobi, it's our only hope...

            "All politics is national."

            by Auriandra on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 11:17:34 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Nice work, MB (8+ / 0-)

    It is clear that in the long-term, if the Millennial generation remains as far left as they are now in their youth (in other words, that they don't grow up and become selfish conservatives), that this will eventually push the entire country farther to the left. It will not happen solely with this election. But at some point 10 or 20 years from now we might look back on this time with the Tea Party and all the reactionary conservatism as the last gasp of the far-right. Every year a new cohort of Millennials comes into voting age. Every year it becomes harder for far-right conservatives to win with this new electorate.

    I like this quote:

    Millennials, in addition to being more socially liberal, tend to see government as more effective than older generations. While they are not necessarily more supportive than their elders of broad social safety net programs, they are substantially more supportive of government regulation, affirmative action and less likely to accuse the government of being wasteful and inefficient. In this regard, Millennials are the only age group in which more voters prefer a bigger government providing more services than a smaller government providing fewer services.

    Finally a generation of Americans who do not think that their government is the enemy. We had a President who stood on the steps of the Capitol in his inaugural address and said "Government is not the solution to our problem, Government is the problem". The same man also uttered one of the most divisive things that a public official could utter when he said "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help." And he meant it. Why did he run for office? To tear down and dismantle government?

    I would like to see a time when that type of rhetoric marginalizes a candidate for national office, rather than endears a nation. I am a Millennial, and I will be voting.

  •  My 19 year old son... (8+ / 0-)

    just filled in his mail-in ballot for Florida. Our ballots are a mess too because of all the amendments/referendums but he actually put some thought into them. I am proud. Sadly, I doubt my daughter who is 22 will vote but since she will probably vote the way her conservative Navy hubby votes, I can't be too sad about it. :)

  •  You know what might motivate them to show up? (5+ / 0-)

    If Obama had actually delivered on the big change he promised, instead of governing for corporations first and continuing so many of Bush's policies.

    •  BTW: "It's the economy stupid" is: (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      CParis, divineorder

      supposed to be a motivational reminder, not an excuse.

      I could stimulate the economy all by myself I had a nickel for every Democrat I've seen shrug and say, "Oh well, what are you going to do?  It's the economy."  Yes, the economy is crap.  So, other than conceding the elections ahead of time, what are Democrats going to do about it?

      The election is less than a month away and unemployment is at 10%.  Where are the promises to fight for jobs programs, for further economic stimulus?  Why weren't the middle-class tax cuts extended, or the payroll tax cut?  Even if they couldn't pass the Senate, policies like these would be great to campaign on.

      President Obama: neither Kenyan nor Keynesian.

      by Tommy Allen on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:21:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I would hazard a guess (8+ / 0-)

    that younger voters are always more upbeat about the economy, no matter how good or bad it is.

    They're just getting started, they don't have much to compare it to, and besides, they have time for things to turn around AND usually somewhere to move back to. They're young, remember - they can move back home.

    Older voters don't have that safety net, they have more to lose when the economy is bad, and the older they are, the more they know that they won't have enough time to make up their losses.

  •  I first voted in for president in 1972. (6+ / 0-)

    I was a month short of 21, and a first year grad student in archaeology. I cut out of an archaeology lab early and rode the train home to eastern Long Island so I could vote for McGovern. I got there 10 minutes before the polls closed in NY. I have never regretted that vote.

  •  Rallies Will Only Draw Likely Voters (4+ / 0-)

    Have they got a serious way to reach the majority of unlikely young voters?

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:22:33 PM PDT

  •  I'm the older cohort of millenials... (5+ / 0-)

    And the only reason I'm voting is Al Gore.  I'm one of the millenials who remember Gore losing in 2000, and how the Republican takeover ruined everything.  So thank you Al Gore, no matter how crappy, self-interested, and just plain awful the Democratic candidates are, until there is a legitimate third-party, the lesser of two evils gets my vote.

    Dr. Dean...Paging Dr. Dean...he's not on-call you say...then get me DR. MATT!! STAT!!!

    by doctormatt06 on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:23:31 PM PDT

  •  Methodology please (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder

    A shitload of "Millenials" don't carry landline phones anymore. If those polls cited were constrained to reach people over landlines, they probably did not get a representative sample. A little disturbing not to see this point addressed in the body of the article, frankly. Traditional polling becomes more and more irrelevant with every passing day, because of the phenomenon of mobile phone technology. People don't record outgoing voicemail messages on little cassette tapes anymore, and they don't respond to their landline phones to answer pollster's questions because many of them don't have landline phones.

    •  What crawled up your ass? (0+ / 0-)

      These polls that you have a problem with show that Millennials are the most liberal age cohort in America. That's cause for celebration. Frankly, my first reaction was not to question the methodology. It is interesting that it would be yours.

      We could probably guess that Millennials that have a landline are more conservative than those who only have a cell phone. So if the polls are oversampling landlines, maybe Millennials are even more liberal than the polls indicate.

      •  Excuse me? (0+ / 0-)

        It's one thing if your opinion holds my question to be illegitimate, an argument which would be hard to make. My very point was that traditional polling by it's nature is reflecting a sample of older and presumably less progressive voters. Why you found it necessary to invoke the image of things crawling in the ass of a perfect stranger is mystifying to me, and doesn't reflect well on you in the least.

    •  see my comment below on cell phones. n/t (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      divineorder, Eric Nelson
    •  Rock the Vote and Pew... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mrblifil, FreeStateDem, Eric Nelson

      ...do, in fact, include cell-phone sampling in their polls. So that's not a problem with these polls. You can see Pew's methodology here.

      Don't tell me what you believe. Tell me what you do and I'll tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 05:28:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not real encouraging (0+ / 0-)

        From Pews own page on cell phone samples:

        One of the most important considerations when conducting cell phone surveys is that the costs are substantially higher than for a traditional landline survey. The cost of a completed cell phone interview is two to two-and-a-half times more than a completed landline interview. Although some of the fixed costs associated with landline surveys are not duplicated when a cell phone sample is added (in particular, programming the questionnaire and pre-testing), other fixed costs are higher (data processing and weighting are more complex in dual-frame surveys).

        This translates to me as "don't blame us that our relative proportion of cell phones sampled is lower than the number of cell phones in the general population (nearing 20% cell phone only). Nor do they state anywhere I can find what they consider to be a satisfactory representation of cell phone users in their polls.

  •  I voted against Nixon in '72,, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wblynch, oxfdblue, Eric Nelson
    you can bet your ass I'll be voting against the current bunch of republicans this time around too!

    "Education is dangerous - Every educated person is a future enemy" Hermann Goering (NRSC?)

    by irate on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:30:33 PM PDT

  •  THEY BETTER VOTE! (4+ / 0-)

    If they want to stay on their parents’ heath insurance and get scholarships, loans and pell grants for college than they will vote.  

  •  cell phones - are they in the poll or not? (7+ / 0-)

    excerpt from recent Nate Silver post:

    1. Many young Americans — and an increasing number of older Americans — rely primarily or entirely on their mobile phones, which many pollsters do not call. About one in four Americans live in cellphone-only households, and that fraction is increasing every year. In addition, another 15 percent of Americans have land lines installed, but rely principally on their cellphones, and many of them rarely or never accept incoming calls on their land lines, especially from strangers.

    On top of that, about 2 percent of Americans don’t have personal telephone service of any kind. That isn’t much of a problem right now, but the fraction may grow as more Americans switch to online substitutes for telephone service, like Skype or Google Voice.

    Pollsters can combat this problem by including cellphone numbers in their samples, of course. An increasing number of national polling houses, including Pew, Gallup and The New York Times — as well as some local pollsters like Quinnipiac and Marist — are doing just that. But this is somewhat expensive, and in an era of austerity for traditional news media companies, not all polling companies are going to the expense of doing so.

    Meanwhile, firms like SurveyUSA and Rasmussen Reports, which use automated programs rather than live interviewers to conduct their polling, rarely or never include cellphones in their samples. In part this is because federal law requires that calls placed to cellphones be dialed manually, which would undermine the cost-competitiveness of the automated polling firms.

    There is some evidence that excluding cellphones may bias the polls — in particular, cellphone-only adults may be more liberal than those who share most of the same demographic characteristics. Therefore, polls that exclude cellphones may tend to underestimate support for Democratic candidates and liberal causes, even if demographic weighting is applied.

    http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes...

  •  I cast my first vote in 1972. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Situational Lefty, Auriandra

    "Who am I to give science the brush?" Sugarpuss O'Shea

    by semiot on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:33:24 PM PDT

  •  IT'S VOTE OR DIE TIME.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wblynch

    DON'T KID YOURSELF

  •  Holy Chit! Murkowski steals my TV ad idea! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder, john keats, FORUS50

    Here's my idea for a "cute TV ad" for Lisa Murkowski back on September 8th:

    "A kids spelling bee asking the child to spell a word. The clues would be favorable blurbs about Murkowski's record.

    Then the child would spell out "Lisa M-U-R-K-O-W-S-K-I...Murkowski."

    HERE'S HER BRAND NEW AD:

  •  we've pissed on this generation since birth (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, FreeStateDem

    they can't afford college, they can't afford to start a family, they will have no pensions, they will have health  ins. as the dependents we have made them.

    We use them for cannon fodder in wars we can't win.  

    who would they vote for if they came out on election day?

    my son stood in line to vote for Obama.  I had to threaten him to register in his new address.  and this a smart, angry, anti-racist, pro-medical marijuana kid, who went to his first picket line in a Snugli.

    It's not a fake orgasm; it's a real yawn.

    by sayitaintso on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:34:41 PM PDT

    •  Who would they vote for? (4+ / 0-)

      Not Republicans if they know who messed everything up in the first place.

      they can't afford college

      Republicans have been passing college costs onto students for decades. They don't want to raise taxes to fund education.

      they can't afford to start a family

      In Reagan's America, workers don't get a raise. Fat Cats see their pay increase 500x, but workers don't get a raise.

      they will have no pensions

      No Social Security either if Republicans had their way. They would have it privatized, then when the stock market tanks like it did in 2008-09, you just lost 20 years of retirement contributions!

      they will have health  ins. as the dependents we have made them

      Not sure what this means. Speaking as a Millennial who buys his own health insurance, I am looking forward to buying insurance through the exchanges that the health reform bill will create. I expect the costs to be lower due to competition in the exchange. Not one flipping Republican voted for the bill. I won't forget that.

      •  Don't fear voting for the other, fear not voting (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CParis, kareylou

        My generation is more apt to become apathetic than Republican.  I think it's easy to say, "I'm too busy to vote," for a lot of people my age.  Not justifying, just saying what I will probably see.

        Dr. Dean...Paging Dr. Dean...he's not on-call you say...then get me DR. MATT!! STAT!!!

        by doctormatt06 on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:56:41 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Exactly! People feel that giving the Dems (0+ / 0-)

          clear majorities in Congress still did not deliver on many key progressive issues.  No change on DADT, wimpy stimulus bills, continuation of Bush tax cuts for wealthy, mediocre health "insurance" reform bill.

          Why bother voting in midterms?  My concern is that people tend to ignore all of the local races - state legislatures, county offices, school boards, etc that will be up in November - that's how the GOP has built their power base - by not just focusing on the Presidential elections.

          If you haven't got anything nice to say about anybody, come sit next to me. ~ Alice Roosevelt Longworth

          by CParis on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 04:18:25 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Bullshit! Every penny we earned was spent on them (0+ / 0-)

      That's the reason "boomers" couldn't save for retirement or had to refinance their homes several times.

      All our money went to give the millenials more than they needed.

      But to say we pissed on that generation is an insult.

  •  It's easy to find working unregistered 18-29 yos (8+ / 0-)

    I ask every checker, every clerk, every retail worker I encounter and one after another they're not registered. A young African American man who was 18 in time for the 2008 election but didn't vote...I left and returned with a registration form and told him about mail in ballots. He seemed to be amused by the whole interaction. Now I carry the forms around with me.

    Colleges are obvious and easy populations for registration but I'm not confident there's a channel to the other 80% of young people. I don't go to movies or malls, maybe there are registration booths there...

    "People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy," Bruce Wayne in Batman Begins.

    by kck on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:35:46 PM PDT

  •  You don't have to be enthusiastic to vote (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Silverleaf, wishingwell, CParis

    Just wanted to remind people that you don't need enthusiasm to vote, you just need to do it because it's part of your civic duty as a U.S. citizen.

    I turned 18 in 1981 and voted for the first time in some local election.  I can't even remember what it was.  A bond election?  City council?  Can't remember.  The issues and/or candidates didn't stick in my mind, and I certainly didn't jump out of bed with enthusiasm on Election Day to cast my vote.  I just did it because that's what grownups do, they vote.

    Study the issues, pick a candidate and just vote already!

    Change TX-32, Change the Nation. Send Democrat Grier Raggio to Congress.

    by CoolOnion on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:38:32 PM PDT

  •  Millenials are not some magic generation that (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wblynch

    will cure the world of evil once they come into their own.

    Most of them are uninformed Rtards just like everyone else swept up on the Obama wave. While they are more socially liberal their views on economics and civil liberties are disturbingly backwards

  •  "Bigger government" (0+ / 0-)

    The term "bigger government" is very misleading.  Who would want a bigger government with too many people doing useless jobs?  The answer is nobody.  Could the problem be that we don't have enough people earning enough money to pay enough taxes to support the country with a military budget that's larger than all military budgets on the planet combined, plus pay for everything else a large nation needs to do to keep up with broken down schools, bridges, transportation of all kinds, health problems, and all the other things that governments should do for their people to live decent and prosperous lives.  Maybe too few people have most of the money, and actually they do, and maybe these people pay a smaller percentage in taxes than the rest of us, which is true.  Could this be the real problem that Republicans are hiding behind their attack on "big government."  

    How about the Democratic Party attacking big paychecks and bonuses that pay too little in taxes?  Could somebody be afraid to step on too many powerful and important toes?  Since all of us are supposed to be equal, why don't we make a simple change in the tax code and have everyone pay the same percentage in taxes?  Isn't it time for hedge fund billionaires to stop paying a measly 15% in income taxes?  Gee, firemen pay more than that, and so do teachers.

    •  Selective reading (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wishingwell, divineorder, Eric Nelson

      Here's the full quote:

      Millennials, in addition to being more socially liberal, tend to see government as more effective than older generations. While they are not necessarily more supportive than their elders of broad social safety net programs, they are substantially more supportive of government regulation, affirmative action and less likely to accuse the government of being wasteful and inefficient. In this regard, Millennials are the only age group in which more voters prefer a bigger government providing more services than a smaller government providing fewer services.

      I don't know how you could read this and assume it means Millennials support a "bigger government with too many people doing useless jobs". In the context of the quote, it means that they don't buy into the decades-old conservative canard that government is the enemy. They think government can be a force for good in our society.

  •  I'm hoping Jon Stewart pushes them hard on 10/30. (8+ / 0-)

    Not just to restore sanity, but to get out and vote.

    "It does not require many words to speak the truth." -- Chief Joseph, native American leader (1840-1904)

    by highfive on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:46:06 PM PDT

  •  Looking ahead according to NDN national polls of (8+ / 0-)

    which they did three

    The survey is the second of three national polls commissioned by NDN's 21st Century America Project.  This project has been established to help policy-makers, elected officials and the public better understand the major demographic changes taking place in America today.  This new poll has been specifically designed to provide more insight into how the political coalitions of the two major political parties in America are adapting to these rapid changes.

    Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

    This resaerch by NDN is really packed with info. and many excellent  graphs
    Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

    Thx MB for the links to  follow. A Gold mine of info. The graphs are awesome.

    All the potential for Democrats to kick ass is there, or here. If the millennials are motivated

    Democrats retain a clear lead in both party identification and the congressional generic ballot that is virtually unchanged from the lead they held in the project's first survey conducted in February 2010.  The core groups of the Democratic Party's new coalition - Millennials, African-Americans, Hispanics - remain solidly Democratic in both their partisan identifications and vote intentions, but the current lack of political intensity among these Democratic groups give Republicans an opening to make gains in 2010.

    I don't want your country back..I want my country forward - Bill Maher

    by Eric Nelson on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 03:58:08 PM PDT

  •  Call me an old fart... (11+ / 0-)

    ...but I just don't understand NOT voting. I've voted in every election since I turned 18 back in 1964. I missed a few primaries back when I was in college, as well as a few local elections back then because they were held on odd days. But since Illinois' Consolidation of Elections Law passed, I'm 100 percent except for a couple when I was in the hospital.

    I would feel extremely guilty if I failed to vote, and I would be right to feel that way. Casting an informed vote is one of the primary responsibilities of citizens living in democracies.

    And besides, thousands of my tax dollars have gone to create the conditions for a literate, informed citizenry to cast ballots, from public schools where they were taught to read and write and the civics and history classes they need to understand how our system of government works (to which far too few apparently paid attention), to the roads folks take to polling places, to all those election day workers staffing polling places in churches, schools, commercial, and government buildings in every community in the land.

    Since 9/11 I've sensed our democracy slipping slowly away due to fear and ignorance and the growing influence of authoritarianism. But I'm not about to throw in the towel and let the yahoos win without a fight. It's my right and more to the point, it's my duty to vote.

  •  I will! Soon-to-be-23-year-old millennial here (15+ / 0-)

    I have never missed even a local election.

    I always get excited to vote!

    I'm thankful that the importance of voting was planted in my mind at an early age. Before I turned 18, I felt a little jealous of those who could vote, and at the same time it made me happy to get closer and closer to my 18th birthday. Since then, I've voted in every single election we've had where I live - even to renew a school district sinking fund millage!

    Too bad not many other young people share that interest in voting. People have to feel like it's worth it to vote, and unfortunately, voting for a governor, congressperson, millage, etc. just isn't as "sexy" (I can't think of a better word) as voting for a President, hence many people don't feel that it's worth it.

    "Virg Bernero is exactly the kind of candidate Democrats need to get in 2010." - Ed Schultz

    by ScottyUrb on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 04:07:48 PM PDT

  •  My Dem Candidates have hired (9+ / 0-)

    Mellinials to run their political campaign offices in my city, they are very educated, many African Americans who are crucial in my city for Dems.

    These young folks love me and I love them, proud to know this caliber of Proud Democrats will step in to us old folks shoes, we are from the Civil Rights era, Viet Nam, etc.

    Dang I'm more Proud to be a Democrat every day!

    Please vote Democratic in November. If the GOP wins we will all be forced backward another decade, who wants that?

    by Wary on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 04:25:44 PM PDT

  •  The problem they aren't thinking about (0+ / 0-)

    Is what happens when a pissed off mid-20's guy decides to not vote for the Democrat because the Democrat sucks and isn't worth voting for.

    ...But still goes to vote anyway.

    I'm not gonna vote for the Republican, so that won't support whatever idiot meme of "Republican wave" that will try to exist.

    But not voting for the guy who still has a D next to his name will probably fuel something else.

    Thing is, I am smart enough to know bullshit when I see it, and I do not react positively to that. I am not young and naive enough to think that "Vote Democrat!" is good enough.

    Unfortunately, my story will get lost in the crowd.

    That's what really sucks about this election. Besides the not having someone to really vote for part.

  •  Younger voters hate negative politics, (0+ / 0-)

    that's why they're turned off to voting -- and why the GOP's default strategy is always negative campaigning. It suppresses the vote for Dems, who most young voters tend to vote for.

    If Obama really wants to fire up young voters, legalize marijuana forchrissakes!  All the young people I know were really disappointed he didn't and that could be one of the reasons they're apathetic about voting this time around.

    Prez Obama, how about doing something for the future base of the party for a change, instead of the moneybags?

  •  Millennial daughter (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson

    My DD will vote. She's looking forward to it ever since she turned 18 in September.

    It isn't shameful to vote your own self-interest instead of the interests of multi-national corporations--iceman

    by fumie on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 05:25:00 PM PDT

  •  Millenium voters/women (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kareylou

    Everybody on this thread has probably seen the one on the youth vote and the one on the Women's vote.

    Ultimately what will make a difference is getting out the vote.

  •  I get my kids absentee ballots (0+ / 0-)

    My daughter votes by absentee all the time, she wouldn't bother unless I got her the ballot. My 24 year old son has no interest in politics, in MD you can register to vote when you go to the MVA. I get him a ballot , he fills out what I tell him and I mail it in for him.
    He really has zero interest in politics and asked if he is a democrat or republican. Anyway he lives out in rural md where everyone hates Obama but he really would never vote on his own, just isn't one of his interests.Parents can push youngsters to vote if they try. Me I expecct about 30% a little better than average but who knows if that will even help us.

  •  Lazy Brats won't show up and vote (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tberry

    They're too worried about their iPads and facebook to get up out of their chairs and go vote.

    "Nah, man, I ain't got time"

    spoiled punks!

  •  Up the technology (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades

    I'm deployed this year for Election Day and was bummed my ballot didn't reach me (partly because I get stationed somewhere new so frequently and forgot I didn't have my latest address registered...and partly because mail takes forever to reach us).  I was trying to use the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (limited to the national races) when I discovered my County Elections Office had an option for having my ballot emailed to me.

    All I have to do is print it out and mail it.  That was a great solution and is enabling me to vote this year.  (And I've voted in every possible election since I was old enough.)

    A lot of states let you do your taxes online now, through state tax websites (not always through corporations' tax prep sites).  So why not prep our ballots online?  We can still print & mail but it would be so much easier.

    As a side note, I never get polled.  Why?  I'm deployed so much of the year out of cell range that I just suspend service for big chunks of time.  I'd be willing to bet none of the folks I work with ever get polled either, for the same reason.  It's a hard group to categorize, because most of us are registered to vote in our homes of record, even though we live far, far away (and have maybe lived in 5 or more states since we registered).  So is politics national or local for us?  Often both...

    I've been encouraging everyone at our unit to vote absentee - after all, it's Congress that funds our salaries, benefits, and equipment - and it's Congress that, with the President, establishes our missions.

  •  Classic Onion Headline (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades, Auriandra

    Shortly after John Kerry's loss, if memory serves:

    "Youth Totally Meant to Vote in Record Numbers"

    Their talk was the talk of sordid buccaneers: it was reckless without hardihood, greedy without audacity, and cruel without courage. - Conrad, Heart of Darkness

    by rmutt on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 08:03:57 PM PDT

  •  They won't show up (0+ / 0-)

    You should be happy they showewd up for Barack, maybe, in two years, they'll show up again.  I wouldn't bet on it, though.

  •  I saw a different poll (0+ / 0-)

    The majority of Democrats who vote in every election is higher for those over 65. In fact I am 64 and I think my generation is more liberal than those people mid 40s-mid 50s. I always refer to that generation as the the 'apathetics'. As people age they do move closer to the center as they face the realities of life. If the younger generation wants to build a more liberal base in the D party, they need to stick with the party, vote every  election and become activists to have some influence. I think Daily Kos does a good job asking people to participate in the political process, and presents relevant information on the elections. Unlike Salon, where every writer and those who post, seem is in a constant state of complaining and bashing Obama and the Democrats.
    I fear the far left echo chamber is going to bring down the Democrats and enable the far right.

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