Youth more conservative than we think

Saturday, April 30, 2016
Michael F. Haverluck (

GOP and Dems dukking it outA conservative youth movement is spreading across America as more and more college students are banding together against the big government and liberal ideals propagated by Leftist faculties on thousands of higher learning campuses.

Over the past four years, Turning Point USA has established chapters on more than 1,000 college campuses from coast to coast — where students can be seen championing conservative political ideals that rarely jive with campus politics.

One of the latest indications that the political tide of youth could be shifting from blue to red was witnessed in National Harbor, Maryland. There, hundreds of college students hoisting political slogans and handing out “Big Government Sucks” buttons and stickers rallied around the Turning Point stage and display tables at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

At the conference in Maryland — a state where Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump beat Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Gov. John Kasich (R-Ohio) by a landslide in Tuesday’s primary — Creighton University student Justin Carrizales asserted that conservatives need to learn from the successful campaigning of the Democrats over the past two elections if they don’t want to suffer a third consecutive loss in the White House race.

"The thing we're trying to do is get out there, be that ground game that Obama was doing in 2008 and 2012 and getting out there, being on campuses and hitting the liberals where it hurts," Carrizales told CBN News.

Turning Point Founder Charlie Kirk realized when he started his organization four years ago as a high school senior that conservative leaders across the country could not tell him that there were enough resources out there to effectively inform and reach out to youth with conservative ideals.

"I asked, 'What do we have to collect data to start chapters, train activists, persuade young high school and college students?'" Kirk shared. "And they really didn't have a very good answer."

Another reason why the youth leader decided to start the conservative movement was to counter the Left’s powerful youth outreaches that have greatly influenced undergrads since the years preceding President Barack Obama’s first term.

"We're up against unparalleled opposition — a well-oiled machine that George Soros and the Left have pumped in hundreds of millions of dollars over the last 10 years," Kirk continued.

Equipping young minds

In order to effectively reach America’s youth, Kirk says his staff and volunteers dialogue with students through hundreds of thousands of conversations every day that introduce them to the wisdom at the core of the conservative principles they champion. This insight is imparted by his team from behind the tables that they set up in university student centers — which are most likely the only places most students will come into contact with conservative ideals.

And even though Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.) — the self-proclaimed socialist — is enjoying great popularity with youth in America, Kirk maintains that there are a lot of young adults out there today who consider themselves independent. He believes these students are very open to hearing the conservative side of the debate on a number of key political issues.

"It's by no means a majority of the youth vote is going to the Left," the conservative activist explained. "Nor do they endorse those ideas whole-heartedly."

Turning Point Field Director Matt Masucci points out that many youth who consider themselves liberal are not well grounded in their ideals, which are shaky at best.

“It's a lot of young people who are liberal, who identify as liberal, but what you'll find is that most of these people when you ask them why they believe certain things, what they really want is less government in their lives," Masucci expressed to CBN News at Ohio State University in Columbus.

A new strategy

Kirk believes that honing in on the social issues often targeted by Leftists is not the most effective way for his movement to turn students from a blue to red mindset. He finds that introducing students to the virtues of small government is the best winning tactic for his team.

"They come in and talk about gay marriage, abortion and drug legalization — that's what they can win on," the head of Turning Point informed. "Well, let's talk about corruption in government, taxes being too high and government being too big."

And during this election year, the conservative leader is bringing out the heavy artillery in the East.

“Kirk's 2016 plan is focused on influencing higher education,” CBN News’ Heather Sells reports. “He wants to double his full-time field staff to 100 by this summer and start a chapter on every major campus in key voting states like Florida, Ohio, and Virginia. His strategy includes selling conservative values through non-stop social media and a heavy use of pop culture.

Serving as a Turning Point volunteer at Cedarville University, Carly Conley is involved in a popular youth outreach that gets students anxious to know what the new theme of the week is going to be — whether it’s “Game of Loans,” “iCapitalism” or “The Healthcare Games.”

"People just love it — using what Millennials know and what Millennials love to get them engaged," Conley insists. "It's so fun to watch!"

Against the odds

Besides having to counter the progressive ideals touted by the entertainment industry and the news media, Turning Point has to go head-to-head with the liberal propaganda taught by professors from behind their lecterns at virtually every college campus in America,

"The vast majority of them {professors} will teach Leftist dogma as facts, will use their position of influence, using grade point leveraging, through ostracizing students, isolating them, making them feel alone, making them feel stupid, not taking their facts or opinions seriously," Kirk contends.

And for those believing that their high school grads will receive a well-balanced education familiarizing their impressionable young students with different ideas across the political spectrum … think again.

“At the least, research shows that liberal professors dominate college campuses,” Sells divulged. “A recent UCLA Higher Education Research Institute study indicated that professors who identity as liberal outnumber those who identity as conservative by a ratio of 5 to 1.”

According to Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), conservatives should be very concerned about the lopsided liberal worldview projected to students at college campuses across the U.S.

"If you're not always training the next generation, how do you ever pass on the legacy?" Blackburn posed to CBN News.

It’s all about relatability

Kirk knows what it takes to win an election, stressing that youth are looking for a likeable and authentic presidential candidate who understands them, and in 2012, Obama gave them this image and received two-thirds of their vote. According to CBN News, analysts insist that former Gov. Mitt Romney (R-Mass.) would have defeated Obama in the last election if he could have captured just half of the youth vote.

"So when a candidate is trying to communicate with a young audience and they don't know the basic terms of vocabulary — Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Kanye West, the Kardashians, Taylor Swift — that doesn't make you very likeable," Kirk insists.


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