Younger voters injecting new life, fresh energy into elections

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According to the Pew Research Center, in the 2018 midterm elections, young people out-voted baby boomers and older generations, an unusual trend that is causing voting numbers to skyrocket.

Although young voters aren’t typically the first ones to the polls.

“There are topics and issues that are going on right now that might not seem like they pertain to our lives, but people need to realize, and I guess this goes for everybody, that you’re not voting to change something right now, most of the time, you’re voting for something to change in the future,” said Hannah Cooper, a student at UT Tyler.

Her point is one that 18-year-old Jack Schoenbrun understands. He exercised his right to vote for the very first time Friday here in Smith County.

“Voting in a local, state, or federal election for the first time is definitely a great privilege and right, so I’m excited to vote for a long time and it’s good to finally do it,” said Schoenbrun.

Young voters turned out for the 2018 midterm elections in record numbers, to the tune of 62.2 million votes. That number includes anyone aged 18 to 53. Together, Millennials and Generation Z cast 30.6 million of those votes. Which is a relief for some Baby Boomers and Generation X-ers we spoke with.

“They’re going to be our leaders, they’re going to be teachers, they’re going to be parents, they’ll continue the vote, they’re going to be tax payers, and so what they have to say is important,” said Ted Baker, a Smith County voter.

Hannah Cooper, a Junior at UT Tyler, says young people need to do their homework and she doesn’t mean on social media.

“Look at each candidate in the race, go to their website, look at their policies, look at what they want to do, the changes they want to make, that is how you go out and you vote smart,” said Cooper.

A call from a young voter to the next to vote smart and make your voice heard in this years primary and general elections.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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