Less Spending and More Government: the Conflicting Views of Voters Under 40

In the first installment of our Beyond the Ballot research series, Resurgent Republic sponsored four focus groups among voters under 40 years old. Nearly all the voters in our groups are self-described moderates and support candidates from both political parties in elections. In the presidential contest last November, the men split evenly 10 to 10, and the women favored President Obama 15 to 4. Conducted by Voter/Consumer Research, the groups were held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and Columbus, Ohio.

In recent elections, younger voters supported Democrats by significant margins. In 2008 Obama won voters 18-29 by a margin nearly four times greater than John Kerry. In 2012, Governor Romney scored an 11-point net swing but still lost this age group by 23 points. Moreover, voters 30-39 favored President Obama by 55 to 42 percent. President Obama carried voters under 40 by double digits in Wisconsin and Ohio. These focus groups covered the role of government, the current fiscal debate, and perceptions of both political parties. [cont.]

Ed Gillespie & Jan van Lohuizen, Resurgent Republic