Charlie Kirk's Sex Appeal, Normal-Sized Face Somehow Weren't Enough To Get Youngs To Vote For Trump
Republicans, at least in private, have accepted that Donald Trump lost the presidential election because of a voter “fraud" conspiracy involving 80 million Americans. Now, the scapegoating begins.
Trump lost the youth vote overwhelmingly this year, which is quite a surprise when you consider how hip he is.
In nearly every Midwestern battleground state that mattered to Trump's reelection, the president performed worse among young voters than in 2016, according to a POLITICO review of state exit polls. Trump ceded ground in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, two states he lost. He also regressed in Arizona, another critical state that slipped away.
In several of these states, the erosion was considerable. In Pennsylvania, President-elect Joe Biden won young voters by a 20-point margin, compared to Hillary Clinton's 9-point advantage in 2016. In Wisconsin, Biden won the state's youngest voters by a 16-point margin, a dramatic rise from Clinton's razor-thin edge in 2016 — and a significant swing in a state Trump only lost by 20,000 votes. Michigan saw a four-point shift from 2016 to 2020.
Republicans don't want to concede that younger voters might've actually connected with old Uncle Joe Biden, but they can't say out loud that Trump's personal odiousness and relentless appeals to 1950s-vintage racism chased away young voters, either.
It didn't help that whenever Trump addressed young voters directly, he still talked about old people shit. During an event this summer in Phoenix, Arizona — another state Trump lost — President Moondoggie went on about "401(k) retirement funds, school choice, and stock market gains."
TRUMP: Your 401(k)s, I don't think you want to have somebody else playing with them because you're just about at a record high, and you put the wrong person in, they will be obliterated.
They should've just billed the event as An Evening With Your Future Father-In-Law.
Young people still have the potential to grow up into hateful bigots. But Republicans prefer knowing they have their future voters already hooked, like smokers but with a more disgusting habit. They're worried the erosion will continue and, worse, young people might even show up in the next midterm elections. However, some Republican strategists insist the grand old party's trouble with the kids today will disappear like magic once Trump is out office. After all, Trump says the quiet parts out loud with a bullhorn instead of a dogwhistle. That's a neat theory that ignores how almost all Republicans these days sound like Trump.
But what about Trump's young douchebag in charge, Charlie Kirk? Reportedly, the Trump campaign “outsourced" its youth outreach to the 27-year-old Turning Points USA founder, whose operation oversaw "door-knocking and grassroots get-out-the-vote efforts this cycle." The results speak for themselves: Voters under 30 favored Biden 61 percent to Trump's 36 percent. Young Black and Latino men and especially women of all creeds and colors wanted nothing to do with Trump.
However, in fairness, white male assholes still preferred Trump. Maybe they hoped he'd give them dancing lessons or maintain the racial, gender hierarchy that benefited their fathers. It's at least one of the two. Kirk personifies unwarranted white male entitlement, which is probably not a selling point among other youth demos that still exist, to the GOP's continued frustration.
Charlie Kirk: "The Left has always hated Thanksgiving" and "now they're using the virus as an excuse for you not to… https://t.co/oJOK9eODNH— Jason Campbell (@Jason Campbell)1605646296.0
A Trump ally claimed Kirk's political action group flopped at youth outreach "because it's a relatively new organization without deeper community ties." In other words, it sucks. Some other Trump aides argued Turning Point's pro-Trump messaging was too “sycophantic," and these are people who work for President Cult Leader.
Turning Point USA is a pathetic organization that promotes nothing more than white male grievance politics. It's no wonder Kirk is so chummy with Trump's idiot man-children. However, Trump's failure with young voters isn't entirely Kirk's fault. Polls show young people care about the climate crisis, the environment, and racial justice. Kirk can complain about how liberals “hate Thanksgiving," but that's not going to stop more red states from flipping into the Democratic column. The world only spins forward.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."