Race for the White House: Rock the Vote
The Hiller Instinct: Race for the White House: Rock the Vote
Young it up! That's what the democrats will be doing tonight as presidential politics meets reality TV, kind of like West Wing with road rules. The candidates' challenge -- catching the ‘young eye for the White House guy’.
Young voters are a ripe target, especially the nation's nine million college students, who vote more often than others their age. A group of Harvard undergraduates, who helped put together a national college poll, found student interest in politics is increasing…
"It means that they really want to get involved. They don't see politics as being a dirty word anymore."
John Chavez, 20, Harvard
And stash that stereotype of college students as rebellious liberals. More students identify themselves as republicans than democrats, though even more say they're independent. More surprises -- Joe Lieberman is the top choice among democrats, but President Bush is the biggest man on campus…
"Well they want a strong leader; they want somebody's who really authentic and they want somebody who they trust their experience in domestic and foreign affairs."
Peter Buttigieg, 21, Harvard
But Iraq is making students mistrust the president with nearly 90 percent saying the Bush Administration has been, "hiding some things or mostly not telling the truth."
"I think college students are responding to the president's personality more than his politics."
Betsy Sykes, 22, Harvard
So college campuses reflect the nation's mind set, President Bush may be the favorite, but he's vulnerable…
"The poll doesn't really tell us, who students will vote for. It says they are persuadable from the democrats or the republicans and that they are truly up for grabs."
Elise Stefanik, 19, Harvard
And some BU students told me how a candidate could grab them…
"What's going to be the most important thing that decides who you vote for?"
"The integrity of the candidate."
"Foreign policy. How they deal with the mess we're in now overseas."
"I'm very pro choice, very woman's rights. Reproductive rights, that's a major factor."
"The economy, because I want a job when I graduate college."
Since young voters share so many of the same concerns as Americans of all ages, the candidates tonight need to think young, not act young.