Scot Lehigh

Younger voters make their political priorities known

THE PRESIDENTIAL campaign trail is often an early barometer of emerging trends and coalescing constituencies in American politics.

Ronald Reagan’s 1980 campaign presaged conservatism’s attraction to a wave of younger voters, as well as the willingness of Northern blue-collar voters to abandon the party of their traditional economic champions in favor of one whose candidate expressed their cultural concerns. Gary Hart’s 1984 campaign marked the emergence of socially liberal, fiscally moderate, reform-minded voters as a potent force in Democratic politics.

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