Apparently, not everyone has joined the rush of media hailing the upcoming Libertarian golden age. Of course it is hard to believe considering how much press Libertarians get for doing so little.
It turns out that the young folks may actually be not just socially liberal but also supportive of government programs to help the poor.
Research from Emory University finds voters under 30 identify as liberal and not libertarian but a margin of 35-16. Their attitude towards social welfare spending is more favorable than those over 30 by a 10 point margin. Numbers like this show that the GOP might be fooling itself if they think younger votes will automatically flock to them if they nominate someone like Rand Paul.
After coming of age during the Great Recession some people don’t automatically embrace the market as the solver of all life’s problems. Go figure.
Studies like this should give the GOP pause to think that simply changing their position on gay marriage or pot (neither of which will be easy) and leaving everything else in place is suddenly going to bring in a whole new flock of voters. In some places it may turn off many of their socially conservative supporters but that is a story for another post.