The Power of Ideas

Demographics and the Election

There is not a day that passes without a vast analysis of the relative merits of a Clinton or Obama Presidency.  One claims to have more experience.  Another claims to be the voice of change.  Both think they are qualified to answer the telephone at 3 A.M. (or any other time of day).  With votes in short supply, each candidate is claiming to be the person best positioned to win the general election.

Is there any other factor that may favor one of these candidates?  I believe so.  Age.  I am referring to the age of the voting pool, not the age of the candidates (who, by Constitutional mandate, at the very least are nearing middle age).  Although it has dropped under the radar screen, the Senator from Illinois has garnered enormous support from young voters.  If this pattern holds, and there is no reason to suppose it won’t, demographics suggest that the elapse of time makes Senator Obama ever more formidable.

Why?  As of 2006, the US Census Bureau estimated that there were 21.3 million people between the ages of 15 and 19.  Using 2004 and 2005 data, this extrapolates to 22 million people in this age group now.  Therefore, there are roughly 4.4 million 17 year olds.  By the time of the general election, eight months hence, almost 3 million new voters will be eligible to vote (my own daughter being one of them).  If the primaries are any indication, Senator Obama will have a lot more support come election time.

Just one observer’s thoughts.


March 10, 2008 - Posted by | Politics

1 Comment »

  1. Nice comment sir- that’s very insightful. The other thing that nobody’s talking about is that how many boomers will retire by the end of the next president’
    s term, and what does that mean for policy and the economy?

    Comment by ed | March 10, 2008

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