Millennials and the 2016 election as your research topic

Many young voters were excited about the Bernie Saunders candidacy. However, since the presidential candidates for the 2016 election have been finalized, the level of enthusiasm from the millennial generation has dropped. Some pundits and politicians are trying to reach this crucial demographic via social media such as Snapchat. Will it work?

Will you vote in the 2016 election? (Credit: The Clause)

Will you vote in the 2016 election? (Credit: The Clause)

Some research paper topics to consider include the voting history of this demographic, as well as the issues that are important to the current generation of twentysomethings.

Will the millennials vote?

With more than 69 million voting-age millennials, the demographic could have a huge impact on the upcoming 2016 election, equal to that of baby boomer voters. But will millennials get involved and turn out to vote? A research paper could investigate the history of voting in America, including how events such as women’s suffrage and the Voting Rights Act changed the process.

According to “College students loom important in November elections” by James Goodman for democratandchronicle.com on September 27, 2016, many colleges and universities are working to get young voters registered in time to participate in the 2016 election. Goodman reported, “The college electorate seems much more fluid in their political preferences with third-party preferences — Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein — playing into the mix.”

Why don’t young voters get involved?

The reality is that many members of the millennial generation feel pessimistic about politicians’ ability to improve the world, much less young voters’ lives, so they opt simply to not get involved. David Lightman delved into the motivations of the millennial generation in his article, “Young Voters to DC: We Don’t Need You” for the June 5, 2016, edition of the News Sentinel.

Not only do young voters feel that the 2016 election, and politicians in general, will not be able to correct the dysfunctional and inert Congress that they have grown up with, but also that our elected officials aren’t there to help the millennial generation achieve their American dream. “This disdain for all things political is a logical aftershock from the politics that dominated the younger generation’s most impressionable years,” Lightman wrote. A research paper could examine the ways that the millennial generation does judge candidates, particularly when it comes to the areas of social issues and personality.

What role can Snapchat play in the 2016 election?

Obviously social media has dramatically changed the world we live in, particularly for the millennial generation. But can it do the same for voting? Some believe that Snapchat may be the way to reach young voters and get them involved in the 2016 election. On September 28, 2016, Adam Chiara posted “Could Snapchat be the digital bridge to younger voters?” on thehill.com about this hope.

The post shared that “On any given day, 41 percent of all 18-34 year olds in the United States go on Snapchat,” and a survey conducted by Harvard in the fall of 2015 found more than half of college students had a Snapchat account. A research paper could look at the ways technology and social media like Snapchat could impact this election and future elections both in terms of young voters and the general electorate.

Want to learn more about elections? Check out Questia—particularly the section on voting behavior.

Are you a part of the millennial generation, and, if so, do you have plans to vote in the 2016 election? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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