Obama Provides Suggestions as Democrats Gear Up for Fall Election; Focus on Young Voters
Former President Obama spoke at a Democratic Fundraiser in S. California last night and offered some insights about a successful strategy for the Fall campaign. He warned that the party's successes in recent special elections won't necessarily translate to victory in November without the hard work of registering votes, especially young voters, and then getting more of them to the polls than Democrats have in past mid-term elections. He made an excellent point regarding young voters:
NPR: "The most important thing we can do," said Obama, "is invite them in and give them power. Give them a voice," he said. Older people tend to think that they know best. But Obama advised: "Get young people involved and get out of the way."
Democratic leadership should heed his advice. Young people will vote if they feel empowered to remake the system, not just select new folks to run the old system. They turned out for Obama because he represented real change, not just tweaks to the current system, and, to a great extent, he fought for 8 years to do that. Hillary had a wonderful resume, but she was widely seen as a relic of the past, without a vision to inspire young voters.
Why this is important: Democrats should keep in mind that without Obama, party leadership consists of Tom Perez, Sen. Charles Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi, and none of them are particularly inspiring figures to young people. They should step back this Fall and let America see new faces that represent the future of the Democratic Party.