Rebecca Nelson of The New Republic thinks that the blue collar youth of America have the potential to be Hillary Clinton’s secret weapon in winning the Election. I for one, could not agree more. Nelson discusses how Trump is leading by 40 points when it comes to having the support of non-educated white youth. Clinton could definitely use the support of the millennials who are not college educated and are not privileged by their economic and educational opportunities. It is imperative that Clinton uses the young blue collar vote to her advantage.
Clinton tends to focus on the voter base that consists of college educated millenials, but she misses out on a big slice of the pie that could definitely help to secure her vote.
Politicians tend to ignore working-class millennials for a simple reason: They don’t show up on Election Day. Just 29 percent of blue-collar youth turned out to vote in 2012—about half the rate of those who’d attended college. But in market terms, that political disengagement represents an opportunity for Clinton: CIRCLE estimates there are more than 17 million eligible voters under 35 still waiting to be mobilized—the last big segment of American voters that is genuinely up for grabs.
Such a large group of voters should not be ignored. However, to secure their vote, Clinton must undoubtedly change her strategy for swaying the millennial voter base. As opposed to focusing solely on the privileged college-educated youth, she must resort to taking on the issues of most concern to blue collar youth. She has to be willing to hear them out and take the initiative to make large structural changes that benefit the blue collar millennial.
An example of a policy Clinton should learn how to embrace is to simplify job routes for the average blue-collar youth.
To pry young, working-class voters away from Trump, she’ll need to champion a host of unglamorous, brass-tacks economic issues. Take one example that antiregulatory conservatives have embraced: streamlining the process of securing licenses for professions like hairdresser, electrician, or building contractor. (1)
As Nelson points out, Clinton does not have to take on the intrinsically ‘cool’ and ‘pop culture’ persona that Obama exudes, but rather, she must learn to listen to those that do not come from privilege and be willing to enact reforms that favor what they want out of their country. In doing so, she will not only sway them away from Donald Trump’s clutches, but gain a voter base that is underrepresented in the people who want her to win the election.
I think it would be a smart move for Clinton to shift her gears into convincing the blue collar youth to get on her side. She would be gaining an invaluable voter base as well as the support of a group of people that normally is not involved in the world of politics. It would give her an edge over Trump, which I think we can all agree is a necessity.