Polls Show Millennials Increasingly Skeptical of Government
(Washington, D.C.) – Recent surveys by Pew Research and Third Way suggest that Millennials are increasingly skeptical of government solutions to policy challenges, and are more likely to identify themselves as politically independent rather than Republican or Democrat. These findings are of particular significance to the Hispanic community, which has a median age of just 27 – the youngest of any U.S demographic. These surveys indicate that while young people were more supportive of President Obama than older Americans, their trust in government to do the right thing is eroding, and their skepticism about the effectiveness of government is growing.
Among the specific findings:
- When something is run by the government it is usually inefficient and wasteful-agreement among Millennials increased from 42% in 2009 to 51% in 2012. (Third Way)
- The government is really run for the benefit of all the people-agreement among Millennials fell from 59% in 2009 to 42% in 2012. (Third Way)
- Trust the government to do what's right all or most of the time-agreement among 18-29 year olds fell from 44% in 2004 to 29% in 2013. (Third Way)
- In December 2013, 57% of 18-29 year olds disapproved of the ACA, with just 38% approving. (Third Way)
- 50% of Millennials now identify as political independents – a full 10 percent increase from 2007. The percentage who consider themselves Democrats has fallen from 35% to 27% since 2008. Just 17% identify as Republicans. (Pew)
Jorge Lima, Policy Director of The LIBRE Initiative, released the following statement:
"America's young people put their trust in a leader and movement that told them government could effectively solve big societal problems. They've seen the results, and many are recognizing that it's just not that simple. More often than not, the best solutions to challenges like economic growth are those that empower individuals and communities to take action and make choices.
On health care, that means increasing the ability of patients to make informed choices in consultation with medical professionals. On the economy, it means reducing excessive regulatory and tax burdens, and allowing entrepreneurs to create jobs. On education, we must find ways to reduce the need for young people to take on thousands of dollars in debt."