This November, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump will enjoy strong support inside the ballot box from young people who identify as conservative, moderate Republican – even libertarian – according to several campus student leaders across the country in email interviews with The College Fix.
The anecdotal punditry comes as Pew research finds that Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson has overtaken Trump for the millennial vote by one percentage point, and a new poll by the Harvard Institute of Politics found Johnson runs neck-and-neck with Trump among multiple groups of voters ages 18 to 29.
But while acknowledging that Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson offers a compelling choice, student campus leaders said they think Trump will ultimately get the most support from right- and liberty-leaning millennials when it comes time to vote this November.
Students leaders, speaking for themselves and not on behalf of the organizations they are involved with, cited reasons such as pragmatism, and an increasing excitement for Trump as the vote draws near.
UC Irvine student Robert Petrosyan, both a member of Young Americans for Liberty and a College Republican, said many students who prefer Johnson may be concerned about throwing away their vote, so most will likely pull the lever for Trump.
“More pragmatic voters might … recognize that Trump is the only candidate on the right that can win the presidency in a two-party system, so that’s another reason for them to choose the Donald,” he said.
And Elise Yost, a cabinet member of Future Female Leaders and a College Republican, echoed similar sentiments.
“It doesn’t seem like enough people have faith in third parties for Gary Johnson to win,” Yost said. “Unfortunately, too many people believe that voting for a third party candidate is a ‘wasted vote.’”
In the end, she said she believes the majority of her conservative and libertarian friends lean Trump.
“Although I do not personally … the majority of my peers have come to the conclusion that Trump would be better than Hillary,” she said.
Mark Kahanding, president of Young Americans for Freedom at Cal State LA, said he thinks that Johnson’s current popularity won’t last and Trump will still come out on top among millennial conservatives.
“Trump has rallied the American people and installed a new desire for America to return to the world stage as the best,” Kahanding said.
Jimmie Williams, a recently converted College Republican from the University of Memphis, said he foresees Trump will take at least 40 percent of young voters, with the rest split between Clinton and Johnson.
“Even though Trump is a very controversial person and a lot of millennials don’t agree with him, they do see the fact that this guy has the business experience, and they do want change,” he said. “Trump has a huge opportunity to do what’s right for the country when it comes to millennials — not handouts but hand ups and encouragement for hard work and dedication.”
Not everyone picked Trump over Johnson, however.
The New York State Chair of YAL, Sean Thema, said millennials in his area appear to support Johnson over Trump.
“Johnson’s solid support among millennials shows our generation is dissatisfied with the two-party system,” he said.
And Clinton is also a big factor. Most interviewed said they believed she will ultimately get a majority of the millennial vote.
“Trump is widely disliked by younger voters,” said Connor Fales, president of the College Democrats at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, adding he believes Clinton will win the 2016 millennial vote.
“As far as Gary Johnson, his stances on social issues may appeal to millennial voters, but his laissez fair approach to markets and squeamishness towards regulation will probably turn off many younger voters who worry about income inequality and another economic crash,” he said.
Re-posted from: http://www.thecollegefix.com/post/28194/