"Solely for the rich." "Lacking in diversity." "Old-fashioned."
That's how young voters perceive the Republican Party, according to a new report by the nation's largest Republican youth organization.
The College Republican National Committee released a 95-page study Monday detailing its study on voters between the ages of 18 and 29, following President Obama's sweeping victory among the voting bloc against GOP nominee Mitt Romney.Rick Moran writes at American Thinker:
In the report, the young Republican activists acknowledge their party has suffered significant damage in recent years. A sampling of the critique on:The report does have some hopeful news for the GOP:Gay marriage: "On the 'open-minded' issue ... [w]e will face serious difficulty so long as the issue of gay marriage remains on the table."I can already hear many commenters sharpening their pencils, ready to go after the youngsters for being RINOs. But the kids have correctly identified the problem. It isn't "tweaking the message" that will win back voters, it is a change in tone and attitude. One can stand on principle and still try to be inclusive, tolerant, and welcoming. It's a no brainer - except that most in the party haven't figured it out yet.
Hispanics: "Latino voters ... tend to think the GOP couldn't care less about them."
Perception of the party's economic stance: "We've become the party that will pat you on your back when you make it, but won't offer you a hand to help you get there."
Big reason for the image problem: The "outrageous statements made by errant Republican voices."
Words that up-for-grabs voters associate with the GOP: "The responses were brutal: closed-minded, racist, rigid, old-fashioned."
During the January 2013 focus group research, respondents in the Columbus group of young men who voted for Obama were asked to name who they viewed as leaders of the Democratic Party. They named prominent former or currently elected officials: Pelosi, the Clintons, Obama, Kennedy, Gore.
When those same respondents were asked to name Republican leaders, they focused heavily on media personalities and commentators: Bill O’Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck.
Yet across all six groups, when the topic turned to future leaders of the parties, the GOP was clearly in a stronger position. Asked to name up-and-coming Republican stars, these young Obama voters could point to a number of examples. Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, Paul Ryan, Bobby Jindal, and Rand Paul were all mentioned.
On the Democratic side? Few groups could list even one up-and-coming Democratic leader. The young men’s focus group in Columbus named Cory Booker, while another participant said, “I can’t think of any young people.” The young women said the same: “We don’t have any.” “I can’t think of any.” The young entrepreneurs in Orlando could not name any rising Democratic leaders at all. Despite the focus groups describing Democrats as the “young” party, no
one could actually describe who their young leaders might be.