February 8th, 2008
06:56 PM ET

Young people revved up for election?

Young supporters chant 'Obama, Obama' as Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama takes the stage at rally at the XL Center during the last full day of campaigning before Super Tuesday. Click the play button to see what Jack and our viewers had to say.(PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Young people are fired up about the 2008 election.

This week we saw more than 3 million voters under the age of 30 flooding the polls on Super Tuesday, turning out in record numbers in more than 20 states. Exit polls showed that in almost every state, youth voter turnout increased significantly from 2000 and 2004.

Some of these statistics are amazing: In Tennessee the number of people between the ages of 18-to-29 who voted more than quadrupled. In Georgia, young voters tripled their turnout this year. And in California, more than 850,000 voters under 30 cast ballots.

This stuff is very encouraging. The turnout of young people actually represented the winning margin of victory in some states. For example, Barack Obama won Missouri by just 10,000 votes. That's a state where 75,000 young people voted for him. The fact is Obama probably owes thanks to young people for a lot of his Super Tuesday victories. In fact, Obama won the youth vote in 19 of the 22 states that voted on Tuesday.

The head of “Rock the Vote” is optimistic. She says: "Young people are tired of being characterized as apathetic and uninterested in politics. They are casting ballots like never before, volunteering on campaigns, organizing at their schools, and have shown, since the first contest in January, they will pick the next President of the United States."

None of this is lost on the campaigns. Candidates are targeting young voters through the internet and any other way they can reach them.

Here’s my question to you: Why are young people so interested in the 2008 election?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Rebecca from Columbus, Ohio writes:
As a young person (20 years old), I am interested in this election because the government has gone down the toilet in the past 8 years and I wasn't able to vote yet in 2004 to try to turn things around. Young people like me are also extremely inspired by Barack Obama, who gives us hope that we can change things in this country. My life has been governed entirely by the Bush and Clinton families, and I'm working to see something new.

K. writes:
100 years in Iraq = DRAFT.

Brandon from Laurel, Mississippi writes:
This will be the first presidential election I will be able to vote in. I am very excited to be able to cast my ballot for Ron Paul. He has cured my apathy about politics and is an example of how we can change for the better. I will vote for him in November if I have to write-in his name!

Sandy writes:
For the same reason I was interested in the election of John F. Kennedy. These kids see a light at the end of the tunnel when they see Barak Obama, and well they should see that light. He is a bright light in this dark world and I hope the people of this country see that light before it's too late. I just hope the "Washington elite" don't screw him over.

C. from Houston, Texas writes:
Young people don't focus on what has been, they focus on the here and now. They use the internet very effectively exchanging information and they love commercials. I believe they have always had an interest in elections but were shut out.

Sean writes:
You want to know why young people are getting involved? It is because we are sick and tired of these political leaders living with a 20th century mentality in a 21st century world.

Filed under: 2008 Election
soundoff (182 Responses)
  1. Scott B

    Because even this group see's our country going down hill fast – The current administration has done so many negative things to our democracy that they just want our country back to the world leader it use to be. When Democracy had a meaning – Right now our democracy is nothing more that a word with no meaning.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:22 pm |
  2. Molly from Milwaukee

    Young people are interested in the election because they have been traumatized by the policies of the Bush administration. They have friends and relatives that have died or been injured in the Iraq war, they are struggling to get a higher education and get a decent job. They are anxious to see a change in leadership that will give them hope for a better future.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:23 pm |
  3. diane in NJ

    Because their friends are dying in Iraq, they can't find jobs to pay their student loans, and their future is bleak due to global warming.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:28 pm |
  4. Thomas

    I am a freshman at college, and i am greatly interested in the 2008 campaign because i realize that the economic problems we are facing may not affect me right now, but when i graduate and im on my own, i hope these economic problems will be fixed so that i can live a better life, and i believe Obama can set our economy back on track.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:35 pm |
  5. JoAnn in Mason City, Iowa

    Because of the desperate mess that Bush has made domestically and internationally. But an even bigger reason is because they have met Barack Obama. He is the future of this nation. He is the reason so many have decided to get involved in politics this year. He gives us someone to vote "for"–not just against the other party. I worry about what happens to the Democratic party if those new voters have their dreams stomped on by the Clinton machine.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:40 pm |
  6. Yvonne

    The youth see an opportunity to effect change. They live in a world where their computer or cell phone is outdated within a year, they�re used to change. When they see the older generation resisting change and embracing the familiar, they feel the urgency to rise to the challenge and let their voice be heard by going out to vote. They also like trendy, cool things, and Obama is trendy and cool.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  7. Sam

    Jack- It is because we would like to see where our future is heading because we all are working and getting taxed and we do have our own families and the rate of everything is going, there will not be any money left in Social Security, where as we are paying into it. We need someone in the Presidency to look out for our interest as well for our kids and the future. We need a President and Politicians who cares about the future of our Country and not the big business or the own personal agendas. We are the Future of America and the Policians needs to see that and start working towards the future.

    Ocala, Florida

    February 8, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  8. Jeff

    I think much of it has to do with the war in Iraq(at least for the young Democrats). Many of our peers are there fighting. And for what? I think it's time we bring our finest home from a place no one will ever be able to define whether we won our lost. Chicago, IL

    February 8, 2008 at 2:43 pm |
  9. Major "C" in Lorton, VA

    Because they are looking at their lives not as it should be, but rather how it is and realizing that "good intentions" are not a substitute for "good acts."

    February 8, 2008 at 2:45 pm |
  10. Tina

    They are afraid that the next president could put the draft back in and they all be sent off to an unwinable war. Also their futures are in the next president and how or how not they will keep jobs over here where people can make a decent wage.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:45 pm |
  11. Kathy/Marietta, GA

    Young people see Hillary and Bill as ancient and with ancient ideas. I told my 18 year old niece that I had lived through the scandals of the Clinton years and suggested that she read about them in totality. She did and voted for Obama. Sh.e said with the terrorists at our heels we cannot afford to be inside a marriage counselor's office everyday

    February 8, 2008 at 2:47 pm |
  12. J.C. from Raleigh, NC

    The Conflict of the Generations theme explains the interest of young people in the 2008 election. The Bible and literature are replete with this theme: The Prodigal Son, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet. Young people connect with Obama whom they perceive as ending the oppression and mistakes of the older generation embodied in candidates such as McCain and Clinton. Out with the old and in with the new!

    February 8, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  13. Troy

    we didn't vote in 2000 or 2004 and look what that got us. This generation is screwing up the country and my generation will have to clean up the mess and pay the bills. We know that if we don't get involved now, the problems that we inherit will be much worse.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  14. W B in Las Vegas

    because after the last 7+ years of job outsourcing, higher college costs, the "perpetual war" AND food and energy inflation, most young people realize that it's THEIR FUTURE on the line.

    but then again, they just might sit at home and watch reruns of "American Idol" like they did in 2004 esp if Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee.

    February 8, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  15. Tom

    The possiblity of a female or African American president. We don't harbor the prejudices of the past and are excited to see that our country's leadership could finally reflect our view. It's a chance to show that we've caught up with other civilized nations where they see that gender and race have no bearing on ability.

    Also no more Bush. Who isn't excited about that? I'm sure he is – off to the ranch.

    Pottstown, PA

    February 8, 2008 at 2:59 pm |
  16. Dave Brooklyn, NY

    Young people always think they are smarter than us old geezers. In this case they are right and realize that we really screwed up big time. So they know they have to do something to try to save themselves from an unimaginable future!

    February 8, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  17. Jorge from Monterey California

    We are interested and commited to Change The ways in washington... I for once in my life feel that a we CAN make a difference I know more than 300 people commited to help Barack Obama be the new President! and if he is not our candidate WE WILL NOT VOTE FOR HILLARY!
    We don't want more lies, or more dynasties, we Demand something Real, we want CHANGE!

    February 8, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  18. marcus


    February 8, 2008 at 3:05 pm |
  19. Mike McKibben, Fl

    It will be the young voters who will be seeking jobs and a future for themselves in this country. They are setting the stage by becoming involved in the political process that will have a direct consequence on their future. I'm not sure that any of the current candidates have the correct resolve to the economic problems now facing this country, but the first one that says that trading with China will come to a halt unless fair conditions are met, bring back jobs to this country, and stop the flow of "illegal" immigration into this country, will have my vote. If all three of these conditions are not met, then they are just putting a band-aid on the problems facing this country.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:06 pm |
  20. Patricia

    Because they know that Bush/Cheney are on the verge of starting World War III by starting conflicts with Iran Pakistan & Korea & they know that it will be the young that will have to fight that war.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:08 pm |
  21. H.L.

    Young people are interested in this election, because we know it is the chance to turn back the clock. We want to take the country back before 1968, when politicians actually worked together and got things done. We are tired of the partisan battles of our parents' generation. We want results, not excuses. Many of us see Barack Obama as the candidate who will bring those results.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:09 pm |
  22. Joy

    Young people are aware of what Bush and his administration have done to our country. They're aware of the declining economy, this self indulgement war Bush started and can't end. I would imagine they have relatives and friends serving in the armed services and know the injustice they have had to suffer. They know the lies, the hypocricy of this administration. They are aware of the corruption of Congress and they want America back. They want to participate in decisions related to their country. After all, the current generation and several generation to come will be paying for the incompetence of our current government. God love our youth as they are the future of our country!!!! Joy, Morrisville, N.C.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:22 pm |
  23. Terry North Carolina

    Young people today have to be worried about their future, look at the issues they are facing, Iraq, social security being exhausted, cost of education, affordable housing, having children and them facing the same problems. Todays young people are looking for change, not status quo. These people have a voice a very strong one, it will be interesting to see if they can propell Barack Obama into the white house.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:24 pm |
  24. Sue

    We should thank George Bush for this. Without his dictatorial presidency for the last 7 years, I don't think young people care much who will be the next president. Now everyone realizes how "screw up" it can be if we don't put a right person in the White House.

    Eden Prairie

    February 8, 2008 at 3:26 pm |
  25. Donny V

    I am writing from Sacramento, CA. I am 30 years old.


    If anything- Life and politics are cyclical. The younger generation of today is realizing that things aren't the way they should be. We are in a war, there is poverty, people are struggling, the economy is turning, people are plunging head first into credit debt, collage loans are the new burden. Something has got to give and I think that what we are seeing is a 1960's style revolution with a 21st century twist- the power of the vote over the sit-ins and protests of the past. Perhaps this is the beginning of something very good for the nation?

    February 8, 2008 at 3:27 pm |
  26. Martin, Michigan

    They have witnessed the devastation of the Bush years and how it might have affected their plans for the future, so now they feel like it's time for a change!

    Obama is telling them what they want to hear, and of course that's good enough for our youngsters. Or maybe it's his youthful mistakes, which we dare not mention without being ciriticized, that young people might relate to.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:29 pm |
  27. Dan

    For me, it's quite simple. While I've always been into politics, this is the first time I feel like I have someone I would be proud to vote for in Senator Obama. For once, rather than just the "lesser of two evils," I feel he is someone who is legitimately suited to the job of reuniting our country after years of being split at the seams.

    Most of my friends, I've found, feel the same way. Feeling optimistic about your choice or choices does a great deal in the way of curing the voter apathy that plagues my generation on such a grand scale.

    East Lansing, MI

    February 8, 2008 at 3:29 pm |
  28. Bob Bologna

    After all the years of the Bush's and Clinton's in the white house I think like everyone else the young voters are hoping for change! haha yeah wouldn't that be nice?
    I wish that would happen but I hope we are not all naive. Jack the more things change the more they stay the same!

    February 8, 2008 at 3:31 pm |
  29. Dennis

    I believe that children are our future teach them well and let them lead the way, show them all the beauty they posses inside, give them a sense of pride , make it easier let the childrens laughter remind us how things used to be

    I decided long ago not to walk in anyones shadow , if i Fail if I succeed you can't take awy my dignity

    That is why todays youth is so interested in this election

    February 8, 2008 at 3:33 pm |
  30. Matt

    I believe that young people's interest is a direct result of the disillusionment caused by our current administration and a resulting sense of both national pride and responsibility aimed at restoring the damage inflicted both domestically and internationally over the past seven years. The positive and engaging campaign of Barack Obama has given us younger voters both hope that this can be achieved as well as an individual calling to help make it happen. The response to such a challenge has been very invigorating amongst this particular generation who have before been shunned from such important political responsibilities.

    -Atlanta, Ga

    February 8, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  31. Colleen

    The youth of the day is tuned into the internet through MySpace and YouTube and FaceBook.

    I am a high school computer teacher and they come into my class and discuss politics while checking the internet to get current information.

    I have encouraged my 18 year old seniors to register to vote so that their vote will count in November.

    It didn't matter if they voted in the primary as I live in Florida.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  32. Josie

    Jack, for the first time young people actually realize what's at stake. The see the aftermath of what happens when you don't vote the country ends up with leaders like George Bush.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  33. Sharon

    I think just about everyone (apparently, other than Republicans), is interested in this election because things are so bad. Our infrastructure is crumbling, our schools are failing, our military has almost been pushed to the breaking point, our borders are broken, high paying jobs have gone overseas, our government can't protect us from contaminated imports or from natural disasters (I was ashamed to be an American after Katrina), the real estate market is tanking, and the American dream seems to be slipping away. So, basically anyone who is paying attention should be concerned and involved.

    I do think, however, that Senator Obama is particularly attractive to young people, and that his campaign has been aggressive in going after their support. I've also noticed a lot of young people seem to like Ron Paul. A major motivating force may be fear of the future if they fail to take part in this election.

    Overall, it is wonderful that the young are so involved, although it is important for each segment of society to have their say. Let's hope that each age group is equally motivated to participate in this election, as I believe that should be the goal of a representative Democracy.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:35 pm |
  34. earl illingsworth

    The electronic age of communication is the answer. Simply put ,the younger generation voting today,has lived thru this exciting evolution of instant messaging,i-phones ,laptops, etc., and now their old enough to vote! We have raised their awareness(consciousness) of politics in America, and how it effects us all, as individuals, and how the entire world looks at us. These new tools of the 21st' century will make a significant contribution for free speech and lasting peace thru out the world . Yes Jack, they realize their "countries future" ,and their "own futures", are at stake NOW, so why not get interested???

    February 8, 2008 at 3:36 pm |
  35. Ellen Rajnisz

    Young people tend to gravitate toward change - I'm sixteen, I see it all the time. The major issues: global warming, Iraq/Afghanistan, health care, pro-choice/life issues, stem cell research, these are all things we care about. The upcoming election is groundbreaking regardless of whomever (hopefully Hillary!) gets the Democratic nomination; both candidates are decidedly different than what we've had. Younger voters have more or less grown up with the Bush administration, and are, like many others this election, sick and tired of it. The 2004 election showed us what could happen if we didn't practice our right, our duty, to vote and we don't want to see that happen again. The current administration piqued us enough to get us to do something, one could argue their greatest achievement.

    I'm from Buffalo, New York.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:37 pm |
  36. bnthdntht

    It would be a shock if 15% of 18 to 25 years actually voted.


    February 8, 2008 at 3:38 pm |
  37. Cale Forty(D)

    I am 17 from Algona, Iowa and I caucused for Barack Obama. No it's not because I am one of the statistics you guys throw out, I have always been brought up to believe that my future is in my hands and I can amount to anything if I work for it. Now I've grown up and I'm not so nieve, but I do believe some amount of success is possible. I also believe that chance is slowly being taken away from us. I got involved because I want this nation to be as great as I thought it was sitting in my 3rd grade class. I voted based on how a candidate made their views, not entirely what their views were. I voted for Barack, because he sends a message of hope but not in that nieve 3rd grade sense. He sends a message of hope with a strong dosage of realism. I think it's time people don't just see younger voters as a statistic.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
  38. Rex in Portland, Ore.

    The young are rallying because they want to take the power away from us old people. Can't say that I blame them. I hope they use it more wisely than we did.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:44 pm |
  39. MaMa4OBAMA

    My son is voting for the first time this year.
    He listens to his MaMa and is voting for OBAMA!

    February 8, 2008 at 3:45 pm |
  40. Vinnie Vino

    The Democrats are going to make this election part of our nation's history maybe they want to be part of it or they are so sick and tried of King George they want to take back our country from the evil doers.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:52 pm |
  41. Paulette Bent Dallas,PA

    These young people think they have a worthwhile cause. They are idealistic and unrealistic. They think that they can change things and how Washington operates. These poor youths don't realize that their cause is already lost because their candidate is part of the establishment and when he accepted theKennedy endorsement he indebted himself to many people.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:53 pm |
  42. Amy in Washington

    Many young voters have only known two families in office - they're ready for someone different. I fear that a brokered democratic convention decided by superdelegates will send these young voters back into the woodwork. It's a surefire way to disenchant those of us who believe our voices might actually make a difference.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:54 pm |
  43. Jordan

    Young people have spent their entire lives with the same two families running this country. I am 19 years old and every general election in my lifetime has led to a Bush or Clinton taking the oval office. When young people see an inspiring candidate like Barack Obama, a fresh young face that can shake up politics in this country, we will do whatever it takes to have him elected.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:54 pm |
  44. Erin

    Oh the hubris of youth, Jack! Young voters are just old enough to understand the ethical vacancy of the last seven years yet still young enough to believe they have the power to change things. Thank God for audacity of youth, for their momentum promises to carry an entire nation to a new beginning.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  45. Alex Smith

    Jack, I am 24 and I see what is going on across the nation. I believe that alot of young people are excited, but about the wrong thing. We know that most of it comes from the Obama camp, they listen to these motivationail speeches and hear this word change. Most young people see change as being great. Give us a good speech and some fire and we will follow you anywhere. "You follow a sexy voice when you are blind" We need to get out of this trance and look at the issues and the experience, you don't go to your younger brother for advice and leadership, you go to your mother,father, grandparents, they have been there and done it.

    Go Hillary

    February 8, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  46. Mike

    I see several reasons, Jack, why young people, and not only them are so interested in this process:

    – they see candidates they can identify with in terms of aspirations (yes, Republicans too)
    – there is a variety of candidates, from newcomers to very experienced 'political animals'
    – we are all curious whether most Americans have learned the lessons about the previous 2 or 3 presidential terms
    – will he actually get his 3rd term at the White House, after being impeached?
    – will the majority of voters get fooled by the 'experience from day one' type of argument (Lybia and North Korea have avoided the waste of money and time required to train new leaders, and they are a happy bunch now, aren't they? )
    – will divisive policies prevail over unity and common goals?

    All, in my humble opinion.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:57 pm |
  47. Zach Garrison


    This election will affect our lives like no other. As college students, we are thinking to the future and life after our education. This is a decision between the politics of the past and the politics of change. We've been presented with a candidate that adheres to our needs and our visions. This candidate is speaking in the same tone as the youth, and it helps that he does it so eloquently and precise.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:57 pm |
  48. Rico

    Its great that young people get out to vote but please do not choose a candidate based upon how trendy and cool they might be.

    February 8, 2008 at 3:59 pm |
  49. Glenn Doty

    The young people are inspired.

    That is part of it. The insiders game in Washington simply doesn't appeal to the idealism of youth... so they simply turn it all off.

    Right now, the youth are rallying around the hope that something is different this time.

    The question is: if the candidate that they hope for loses, what will KEEP them interested in politics?

    I know for the Dean campaign we signed up hundreds of thousands of young new voters... who didn't bother to vote once Dean bowed out. The young support a candidate, not a process or a specific group.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  50. Josh

    I am energized to vote Democrat and oust the Republicans from power. Jack, I want change to happen to this country. It's time to change the failed and inept policies of the Bush Regime. Many Americans are eager to close the chapter of an extremely incompetent President who many in my home state were conned into voting for. Let's go Democrat's and win this election.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  51. Monte Brown, New York, NY

    These kids don't pay bills so they are not worried about the economy. That is why many of them like Obama over Hillary Clinton. They should listen to their parents for once.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  52. John in Champaign, IL


    What we're seeing in this election is a convergence of technology to reach young people being used by candidates that we actually CARE about this year. Being a college student myself, the excitement of actually being an influential demographic that may decide who is the next commander in chief is palpable all around my university campus. We are tired of the talking heads trying to dispel the passions and convictions of younger generations. We will be running this country someday soon, and what better time than now to make our mark in history?

    February 8, 2008 at 4:06 pm |

    the answer is simple jack. change! the young people have seen what the old stuff shirts in washington have done and where we are headed. the younger people want to be a part of their future that has all but mortgaged into a debt they will have to pay.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  54. Karen

    I'm guessing it's their tv / internet drone mentality that tells them to buy, buy, buy no matter the quality, no matter the consequences. (It's probably their parents money too).

    February 8, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  55. Minda Lillie

    There was a time in America when the youth were concerned. The country was in an unpopular war, the Pres. embroiled in scandal, but what happened? McGovern lost the election. People want change, they always want change, but the peacenik candidate never wins in America. While Obama seems like the new/now/next thing for young people, the youth vote went for Clinton in California. Some young people realize that change is only a word without the plans and skills to bring about that change. Not all young people are voting for Obama. There are even some voting for McCain as well. The press loves to put people in boxes to explain their votes. This election, the polls have been consistently wrong. On election day the actual voters get the chance to decide. The press has been trying to influence the vote by displaying polls indicating Obama beats McCain, whereas Hillary is even. These polls are absolutely meaningless. After N.H. the press was trying to explain the failure of the polls. They said it was the Bradley effect, inserting "race" into the race. If there is a Bradley effect, Obama is even with McCain too.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:09 pm |
  56. Little Bo Peep Lenexa, Kansas

    The internet plays a big part in the younger generation and their interest in the election. Older people work and don't have time to watch it and know that it really doesn't mater anyway. The Democratic side will be brokered by the Super Duper delegates. Their vote will have not mattered unless they voted for Clinton because too many of the Super Duper Democrat Delegates owe the Clinton's for where they are. poor Obama doesn't have a snowballs chance in hell at winning in a brokered convention. Young people can not relate to McCain because he is like 76 years old. They do not see him as a viable candidate. The only real hope is that most of these young interested generation have not reached voting age yet.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  57. Raphael from New York NY

    Jack, after years of living under administrations were they had no say, young people are now believing they help bring needed changes to our country by electing someone who promises to make reforms.
    However, only time will tell whether such a person professing to make needed changes becomes our leader and subsequently if he/she is able to make them reality. If such a person does not become our leader, our wants and needs are not met and we live more years like the past eight, and if McCain is elected (this is quite possible) perhaps our young people will lose interest in future elections.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  58. Steve, Idaho

    People in their teens and 20s historically a carefree life, don't worry about government politics. These young kids were shocked out of their carefree lives by the constant bombardment of lies and scandals on a daily basis and watching their futures dwindling to nothing. I don't think they can take it anymore.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  59. coolkraft

    Young people are enthusiastic because there is a candidate not beholden to Washington drivel....he speaks a language of hope and working together with encouragement for our country. What a refreshing change and this is why young people are excited and coming out.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:14 pm |
  60. Rita Lyn

    The youth today are not unlike youth of generatons past. They want to believe and hope that Washington can be changed. Right! Someday, they'll reach our age Jack and sadly realize that it's true, You can't fight City Hall. We need to look no further than our new congress. They promised change. It hasn't happened yet. Go ahead, elect Obama. The Republicans will play their games and he'll be just another Jimmy Carter.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:15 pm |
  61. Allen of Hartwell GA

    Jack, the last time young people were this interested in the working of the government was 40 years ago. We had a war going on and the government was viewed as the enemy. Biggest difference is that back then most of them couldn't vote. Guess who that generation is now?

    February 8, 2008 at 4:15 pm |
  62. Tenneille Smart

    two words: Barack Obama

    February 8, 2008 at 4:16 pm |
  63. Dean, Pittsburgh PA

    At the age of 22, I fall into the category as a "young voter." I have never known a country outside of partisan bickering. Some of my first memories of politics come from the battle between Mr. Clinton and Mr. Gingrich. Over the past eight years, President Bush only fueled the fire of partisan divide. Perhaps the most important reason why I am interested in this election (and support Obama) is the prospect that for the first time in my life, I could live in a UNITED States of America.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:16 pm |
  64. Jim

    After 7 years of Bush/Cheyney/Rove and other cronies, why shouldn't every sane soul in America be revved up over a chance to regain the protection of their constitutional rights and America's future? Us old folks might be stuck in the muds with too much party loyalty, but these young folks are inspired by any opportunity to force change. America is so bad off that any change is better than none!

    Prosperity SC

    February 8, 2008 at 4:16 pm |
  65. Derek in Arkansas

    It's simple, Jack. No candidate since JFK has inspired people across this nation than Barack Obama. Young people gravitate toward his message of hope and change. As a young, politically active individual, it is disappointing that folks my age haven't participated more. It's a shame it takes such inspiration. We should consider it our civic duty and realize that if we don't vote, we won't be heard as young people. Still, I am grateful that Obama–and Hillary to an extent–has helped create this swarm of new, young voters. It's about time.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:18 pm |
  66. Christoph

    I don't recall whether young people voted like crazy in 1992, but I suspect so. I was one of them. It was my first voting experience, I was revved up and angry with that Bush administration, and it all seemed to make me a more politically interested person in the long run. (I went on to earn a college degree in politics four years later.) Perhaps it has to do with the problem of a protracted state of war in a developed democracy; but I think it has plenty to do with static situations, especially on the national level, irritate us culturally.

    Young people are probably more sensitive to this.

    I don't know if voting this year will make them more politically savvy, whether it will lead to better voter turnout in future elections; but it is encouraging. More than anything, it's probably the most responsible way young people can tell the rest of us (who didn't do enough to prevent the current quagmire) to shut up.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:18 pm |
  67. Trish

    Don't be too excited on those crowds of young people.
    It is very nice to watch it but it looks more like rock-star concerts than than real electorat meeting.
    Youth is very nice period of life but it is known to be tied up with idealistic dreams and hope.
    it the choice of next president is based only on young people preference it can be false.
    Obama is great performer (good talker) but presidency is hard faily work not always glamorouse.
    My opinion and opinion of my friends democrats is that Hillary is much more suitable for this role now.
    Obama maybe in future if he shows real achievements

    February 8, 2008 at 4:18 pm |
  68. Alfreda S. Wallace


    Young people are fired up about this election because their participation and involvement has been encouraged and sought after by the Obama campaign. They realize their votes can make a difference, and see what happens when you don’t vote. If a brilliant man like Barack Obama is not ready to be president, how the hell did we end up with George Bush? We are such hypocrites! I’m 65 years old, and I say—let the young people take charge!!! Can they do worse than we have been doing for the past 7 years? Give Obama a chance.

    ASW, Tuskegee, Alabama

    February 8, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  69. Kathy

    I believe that even though McCain is not a conservative, he is not the liberal that we find in Obama or Hillary. It may not be the best, but it is certainly better than the worst.
    Jayton, Tx

    February 8, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  70. Nick Wright

    Jack, if you spent the springtime of your youth in the dark days of the Bush Administration, wouldn't you be anxious to help get rid of them?

    Nick Wright
    Atlanta, GA

    February 8, 2008 at 4:23 pm |
  71. Jennifer Collins

    Jack... Why don't you ask the young people who voted instead of listening to older people who think they know. how's that for logic?

    February 8, 2008 at 4:23 pm |
  72. Patrick

    Cafferty in your biased post you forgot to mention that in California, Clinton won the youth vote. That ends Obama's monoply of the youth vote! You make it seen that the youth is just going for Obama when in reality this is not true.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:23 pm |
  73. Mike from Princeton, NJ

    The increased enthusiasm by young people is definitely more evident this year. I am a third year student in college, and to me, there are probably two most important factors driving younger people to the voting booths this year. First is the emergence of technology, not only in widespread broadcast and interactivity in debates, organization of online political groups and discussion, but even in the CNN news room with your truly eye-catching and detailed (though sometimes over-the-top) analysis of this primary election as it happens. Second, and more importantly, young people in this country have perpetually felt a disconnect between them and the older generation. At the beginning of this century, however, the impact is even greater, with the continuing failures of the Bush administration, with environmental issues being the hot topic, the government initiating unjust wars overseas, and increasing futility instilled within the hearts and minds of those who should be the ones governing this country. Candidates like Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Ron Paul have inspired people my age to believe that maybe a politician COULD be more than a smooth-talking old white man in a suit, who brings broad promises to many, and carries through for a few. Even if change cannot be brought right away, it is a universal feeling that we must take steps in the right direction, and this new generation of political candidates have at the very least, brought inspiration back into the democratic process.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:27 pm |
  74. Michael, NY

    Not sure why you old folks don't understand.

    Two words: Barack Obama.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:28 pm |
  75. Amanda

    I am 29 years old and I believe that the young people of our country are ready for their voice to be heard. Up until you are old enough to vote, you are told by others who the best candidate would be. We can now make up our own minds. This election is something that will affect our lives as well as our children. I am a Clinton supporter. I am voting for experience. I like Obama, however I don't think he is ready. I look at it like this. I have three children and I would not put my childrens future in the hands of someone that has not had experience.

    HILLARY 08!!!!!!!!!!

    February 8, 2008 at 4:28 pm |
  76. Luis Roman

    Well Jack! I think we have realized that we must take our future in our own hands! For so long young voters have been discouraged from being involved in the process, tired of the same old politics of Washington. Now, we have a HOPE! Not hope for a particular candidate, but a hope for change. Whether is Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama (not sure if McCain is attracting the same amount of young voters) we will be key in electing the new Leader of our Country!

    February 8, 2008 at 4:29 pm |
  77. Luis Roman

    Well Jack! I think we have realized that we must take our future in our own hands! For so long young voters have been discouraged from being involved in the process, tired of the same old politics of Washington. Now, we have a HOPE! Not hope for a particular candidate, but a hope for change. Whether is Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama (not sure if McCain is attracting the same amount of young voters) we will be key in electing the new Leader of our Country!

    Glen Burnie, Maryland

    February 8, 2008 at 4:29 pm |
  78. Richard Sternagel

    Jack, it is because of at least two things: young people are told by McCain that they should prepare for 100 year campaign in Iraq.That prospect means the current young and the prospect that their grandchildren will be fighting Bush's war have spurred the young to be involved in voting this year!Finally,the failed economic policies of the Bush Administration have galvanized the young to vote for change in how our government functions.They need some one they can trust and that person is Barack Obama!

    February 8, 2008 at 4:30 pm |
  79. Kevin- Webster, MA

    It is the Obama wave, I'm 51 and a registered republican and it has caught me. If he loses to Super delegates after a popular vote win they'll problably never vote again

    February 8, 2008 at 4:31 pm |
  80. kenneth

    Yep, they appear to be doing great! Such are the benefits of filter down economics, I don,t feel bad about the benefits my family has enjoyed, due to the öil-patch and their profits. the American dream, and, every-time Hillary fills up, my kids get a cut, for college. God bless Texas!!! kr

    February 8, 2008 at 4:32 pm |
  81. Thomas, FL

    Young people are revved up because we are starting to realize that Washington is going to hand an utter mess down to our generation. The only problem is, most of these young voters are voting for the very worst person to deal with these problems! You would think that voters who are concerned about their future would bother to do a little research on the issues. Don't you love the irony, Jack?

    February 8, 2008 at 4:32 pm |
  82. JamesSanDiego

    I think my age group is just tired of watching the politics of our parents and grandparents screw up our future. I think that it is our time to create a Camelot that actually works. .

    February 8, 2008 at 4:32 pm |
  83. David A. Morse, Stoneham, MA


    Because young people are still Idealists. They haven't been tainted by the cynicism that older voters have. They are excited by Obama and believe that people can change the world.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:33 pm |
  84. Josh

    They are more than in the past because they have seen over the past few years, during which many haven't been able to vote, that the choices made now during the elections will have a tremendous impact on their lives. They want to have their voices heard. I cannot wait to vote for the first time this year. I want my voice to be heard. If you don't vote, why should you be able to complain about what elected officials are doing if you don't vote for them? Vote and make your voice heard.


    February 8, 2008 at 4:34 pm |
  85. rick

    if dem party makes obama there candidate not clinton, i will not vote in 08. i am old enough to remimber hillary being beat-up and draged through the mud by the repugs i didnt even see a lot of dems standing up for her in 92. she was visionary i know it could have probably saved my faimly 200,000 or so over the last 15 yrs or so. i guess the american people will abandon her just like it does vets. obama is a good man but i think its easier to come out for health care when its a popular idea. unlike it was in 92 its called having some loyalty i think dems need some

    February 8, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  86. Greg from PA

    George Bush and the Republicans have sent their friends to fight and die in Iraq, traded away or shipped many of their jobs and futures overseas, burdened them with a 3 trillion dollar plus debt, lied to them, taken away their right to privacy, embraced torture of prisoners of war, and the list goes on. Young people feel betrayed and are righteously angry. They see Barack Obama as the candidate who knows best how they feel and who is most likely to change things for the better.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  87. Joanna

    I made my husband, who is 29, vote. I'm 30, therefore I'm not "young" anymore, but I still voted.

    But for the record, I have voted for every President, since I could vote for one. But then I was also a news junkie since I was 12.

    Frankly, my younger sister (whom I consider an idiot, but she falls in line with people her age) is interested in Obama purely because it's cool to be interested in Obama. When I asked her to back up her claim all she said was he offered change... I asked her, "What is he going to change?" She couldn't really give me an answer. Then I asked, "How are you going to change things if you don't know how it works?" She still couldn't give me an answer... Then I asked why she wouldn't vote for Clinton and she said, "Because Clintons already had power once." I told her that her Husband became President not Hillary and she said, "Yeah... I know." So I responded "Do you do everything your boyfriend tells you?", and her answer was apparently yes...

    That's the problem... young people don't think for themselves nowadays. They don't read about the candidates. They are all hype, no substance. At least when I was young and voted, I made a better case for my candidate. I read what I could about the candidates and formed an opinion based on logic.

    I guess the youth today, just want "change" whatever that is...

    February 8, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  88. David,San Bernardino,CA.

    Young people are finally waking up and realizing that their education,jobs and future is being stolen from them, Tuition ,books and room and board are going through the roof,banks and loan companies are enticing them with student loans and credit cards they can never repay,good paying jobs are disappearing at an alarming rate,housing is something they will never be able to afford and the quality of life is almost gone. They are finally realizing that there must be a revolution and throw the rascals out. There very lives depend on it.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  89. Darren

    As a 24 year old, I have had the privilege of voting in the 2004 election, as well as in this one. However, something is different this time, and greatly so. I voted Kerry in 2004, wanted to see a change in leadership, but not because I felt Kerry could do anything about it. In 2008, though, I have a candidate that motivates me, and makes me sit up in my seat when I hear him speak. I look around me and realize that something can change, and that progress can be made. At the same time I look back and realize that for 20 of my 24 years there has been a Bush or a Clinton leading my country. So I do my research – which many people seem to blame us for NOT doing – and realize that some candidates pander to their voters, ignoring their past and merely stating what their voters want to hear, while others speak straight or speak inspirationally knowing that their records will back up their words (not trying to recolor past issues in a favorable light, or merely gloss over touchy subjects). I look at the board and can point to someone and say "I want this person to be the leader of this nation" instead of looking at the nominees and saying "This person is not nearly as bad as that person, so I guess I should vote for them". It's also the chance to vote for someone who walks the walk, instead of continually talking the talk. No matter how many times I hear about someone's lack of experience, age, or position, I know I have read their position, I have seen their debates, I know where they are coming from, and I can realize that the choice I have made it the only choice for candidate that won't have me thinking "I guess they aren't so bad." It is this honesty, intelligence, planning, integrity, and motivation that leads me to vote Obama, and to passionately tell anyone about him and why they should vote for him whenever I get the chance. I am not a cult-member, or a rabid fan of a rock-star. I am a voter who knows that he sees the potential for change, and the potential for the greatness that America can be. I hope that when I am my parents' or me grandparents' age I can look back and say "We made a difference then. We took a political, economic, diplomatic mess, and turned it around. We brought America back to what we were told it could be and made it into the great nation it is today."

    February 8, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  90. terry

    A media chosen candidate is what we had for the last two terms . We don't need another one . Hillary Clinton is strong and well knowlegde on affairs of the office. Someone wake me up .What has Obama done ?? He spent most of his career campaing. Please give me a break . Someone with experience verses a media player. Something needs done . If you don't like her stay out of it . The media is one sided , the women of the world should be against it..

    February 8, 2008 at 4:37 pm |
  91. Vinny, Texas

    Like the rest of the country, they are watching our status around the world go down the toilet along with their parents struggling to make a living in this terrible economy. They see a candidate with a new fresh message and inspires hope. If Hillary wins the nomination, the young voters will not bother showing up in November.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:39 pm |
  92. michell

    You are just asking this so people will say Obama. But just ask any of them one thing Obama stands for. Besides drivers liscense for illegals & change don't count

    February 8, 2008 at 4:40 pm |
  93. kris

    because Obama

    February 8, 2008 at 4:41 pm |
  94. Ali Bie

    Jack, I've got 5 children. The youngest is 17. The young voters are paying a lot more for gas, and college. 18 yr olds ( who began paying for their own stuff) in year 2000, are now about 28 yrs old. They see who is in the White House, what party he is for, and are coming out in groves to assure no Republican gets to continue messing up their futures.
    Isn't it a delightful thing to see a lot more young people ARE getting interested?

    Ali Bie

    February 8, 2008 at 4:42 pm |
  95. Brian Nancoo - Trinidad

    Because they can get involved via the computer screen.On election day, most of those who blog,etc.etc. won't vote because that takes time and effort. Its like that Obama Girl who got all the attention because of the net and was too lazy and unconcerned to get her vote in.The candidate who has the youth support at the rallies and on the net will lose the election because youth is too lazy to get out and do the work needed to vote.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:42 pm |
  96. koolkat

    Plain & simple we are all fed up with Bush (the worst president we ever had ) & this do nothing Congress. Also it's about time you old grumps start listening to us.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:45 pm |
  97. Athena

    Every where you turn, the young people have been getting a bad rap, and so these elections present an opportunity for them to participate in something that is much larger than America, something that could potentially change not only their own lives, but millions of lives around the world. They really want to be a part of that experience – an inevitable transformational change.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:45 pm |
  98. John

    Paula Abdul once sang:

    "See the wisdom from mistakes in the past.

    Hear the younger generation ask

    What has the final say?

    The promise of a new day."

    If Hillary Clinton somehow wins the nomination, she should immediately thank Barack Obama for getting so many young voters registered and involved in the process. Young people are the ones who are seeing their peers die in the war that Clinton voted to authorize.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:46 pm |
  99. Shelly

    Are you kidding? Two Words: Barack Obama

    If he were not in this race no one...young or old would be as interested...especially this early into the campaign. That is just a fact.

    I'm sorry.....Hillary and John McCain just aren't that interesting. None of the other candidates were either to be frank.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:46 pm |
  100. Aisha,KY

    Why shouldn't they be? Seriously, I believe the reason is clear, they want a different future/America than they are currently living in. Unfortunately I think for the last two elections, many of us were not paying attention, and now we are paying the price.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:46 pm |
  101. Jean Smith

    My husband and I watch cnn more than any other station and enjoy your segments.
    We wonder why cnn gives more coverage to Obama thanHillary? Even if you have favorites, I
    believe you should be more fair and give equal time. You just ran a speech of Obama. I am waiting for you to show one of Hillarys.I am from Ark. and will not be
    vofting fkor Huchabee.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:46 pm |
  102. Fern Gladstone

    I was at Brandeis University last week with about 20 dedicated Barack Obama volunteers. They were all freshman. They know the issues, are inspired by him, and are looking for change. I’m 65 and have never seen anything like it. It looks like they will do anything to get him elected. After they worked the phones for four hours we went to the rally in Boston. We stood in line for 3 hours in the freezing cold all the while I was saying to my self “this is the last time I do this.” I am thrilled to see these young people so engaged when they have been apathetic for so long. My challenge today is for Obama girl. Tell the young people who still haven’t voted to drag their butts to the polls even if they are on their deathbed. Shame on you Obama girl!

    A mature Obama Mama girl Fern Gladstone
    Waltham MA

    February 8, 2008 at 4:48 pm |
  103. Jerry in Michigan

    Two words....BARACK OBAMA!!

    February 8, 2008 at 4:49 pm |
  104. Robert

    Obama is “Inspirational” and has gotten young people out to the polls, like American Idol has got them in front of the TV. Can the county run on Inspiration alone? When I listen to Obama I hear a lot of “We are ready for a Change!” “I’m asking you to believe in Change”, yet I don’t ever hear how he is going to change things? It is apparent that he doesn’t know how he is going to change things. If the economy keeps going the way it is, it will take a lot more than “Inspiration” to get this country back on track. If we (the Democratic Party) don’t get behind someone soon, we will be looking at McCain (Bush) for four more years!!!

    February 8, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  105. Yan

    Because they found somebody they can easily fall in love with – and the same goes to you, Jack. But we all know that we get heart broken from love affairs, don't we?

    February 8, 2008 at 4:51 pm |
  106. Judy, Exeter, Ca

    Jack – I remember going to watch a campaign speech given by John F. Kennedy in San Diego's Aztec Stadium. The place was jammed with young people. I was 16 years old at the time, and couldn't even vote, but I didn't care. I remember how thrilling it was to see this country's next president in the flesh. For what it's worth, our youth is probably experiencing that same sensibility with Obama. It's like a flashback for those of us who remember the sense of hope and vitality he gave our country.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:51 pm |
  107. Mick

    Your a great man and the young should listen to you, keep on pluging you are doing well Hillary will lose.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  108. Michael M Phx AZ

    I think it is because now, finally, most of the young people, the young adults especially, are seeing which direction this country has been headed since Bush/Cheney came to power. I have a son, how is a Political Science major, and he studies not only US politics, but also different countries, especially those in the Middle East and China, and sees where we are headed. In fact, at one point, and I think he is still interested, is that he would like to work for Gov Bill Richardson in some type of support role. My son was going to attend Arizona State, but found that to be too expensive and too many courses only being taught by grad students. He will go back to Kansas State, where he had already taken upper division courses when he was a freshman, and the classes are taught by professors, not grad students, and with out of state tutition that is lower than in-state here in Arizona.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  109. BJ Smith

    Two words

    1. George Bush
    2. Barack Obama

    From BJ Seminole, FL

    February 8, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  110. Jerry

    young people are interested in the 2008 election because we've seen our future be mortgaged by the powers that be in Washington, as well as the US reputation around the world we would like to travel in be trammelled. Finally there is a younger candidate who is energetic and inspiring. One who promotes and clearly believes in changing the status quo that has led us into the messes that face this country.

    Obama is young himself, energetic, technology savvy. the young can identify with him.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  111. OMG!

    That is about the scariest picture I have ever seen. These are the voters you want electing the next president? It looks like a Beatles concert. Do you think that they are screaming because they care about health reform? Taxes? No. They are screaming out of some wierd form of attraction to the guy. It totally creeps me out. Shame on America for acting soooooo stupid and soooooooooo irresponsible. And most of all, shame on Obama for soliticing votes from groupies. Mr. Slick should never be Mr. President.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  112. Jim Bloom

    In the last eight years, people aged 18 – 21 have seen two of the closest presidential elections in history and a congressional election where a number of incumbents were voted out. Also, they know friends who have been killed or maimed in Iraq and on a personal level they face an uncertain economy. They know their vote counts and they want their voices heard.

    Chicago, IL

    February 8, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  113. Kyle

    It is because the young people know what kind of country they are going to inherit. They are sick of living in a time of war and being hated around the globe. Young people want peace, hope, and freedom.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:55 pm |
  114. Amy, Kalamazoo

    It's the popular thing to do. It doesn't necessarily mean it's an influx of educated voters- meaning, they may be in college or just out of it, but alot of it is bandwagon, beatles mania.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  115. Charles

    I am one of these young people you are speaking of. I am 26 and have been put in positions where I have had to wait and watch as experience messes things up. For the first time in my life I have a political voice and that voice can be found in Obama and what he stands for. I have watched as the "washington" exprience has meesed up my country and hindered my path for a successful future. Clinton is the same old "Washington" experience that has messed up our country. Young people see that we can unite and move this country in a positive direction. It is unfortunate that the Old voices are trying to silence the youth with Clinton and McCain. The experience aurgument is fouled simply because Obama if elected president will be surronded by experience and he will have the ability to actually listen and make a good decision.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  116. Theresa in Mississippi

    Jack, the Obama girl didn't vote so...are they really fired up or is this just like a rock concert where it's cool to take a picture on your cell phone because you were sooo there, but not so cool when you have to stand in line to mark a ballot that nobody would put on U-Tube. From the graphs I've seen of Super Tuesday, there's not a lot of difference between the young vote going democrat or republican, and I hardly think John McCain inspires the MTV generation.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  117. DMW

    Today's young people follow rock stars and T.V. personalities. Obama is a rock star thanks to the media and the way he speaks. When I see young people screaming and saying 'I love You' Obama, I know that is not reality. Change is a word and young people have not fully grasped the work invovled with change. So, it is fantasy. Hopefully they will not make that fantasy a reality by helping Obama become the Democratic nominee. If so, I fear the Republicans will win in November because those of us who have lived life, knows that Obama is not experienced enough and although Obama feels that Hillary's supporters will back him, most of us will not because we'd want someone who can deal with the realitites in the world, so we'd vote for McCain.

    I do give young people credit for being involved, yet, they know not what they do.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  118. Annie

    Come on Jack, can't you still remember being that young? I can. You feel powerful because you know in large numbers your voice will be heard. And the optimism is brimming over because nothing has knocked it back yet. It's wonderful to see!

    February 8, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  119. Kevin Jorkins

    Barack Obama

    February 8, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  120. tomdavie

    Dear Jack.

    You are well old enough to know that getting folks hyped up in primaries -especially caucus's is fine and all, but waiting 2 to 3 hrs to vote on National Election day is another.

    You are old enough to know that the youth vote has NEVER turned the election. Ever.

    I want to ask you directly, to have some class and grace, and stop STUMPING for Obama 24 hours a day.

    It is not your place as a journalist to STUMP for a candidate and continually pump out articles everyday to promote one candidate.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  121. Tracy

    Pretty sure the answer is Barack Obama. They have a candidate who wants to bring them into the process. Someone who want to give them $4,000 a year for college in exchange for community service. What young person would not want less debt when they enter the work force? I could go on and on but I think it is pretty clear that Barack Obama is responsible for firing up the young voters.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  122. Theresa in Mississippi

    Jack, the Obama girl didn't vote so...are they really fired up or is this just like a rock concert where it's cool to take a picture on your cell phone because you were sooo there, but not so cool when you have to stand in line to mark a ballot that nobody would put on U-Tube. From the graphs I've seen of Super Tuesday, there's not a lot of difference between the young vote going democrat or republican, and I hardly think John McCain inspires the MTV generation.

    February 8, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  123. Paul

    Simple – Barack Obama!

    February 8, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  124. holly

    Barack Obama.....

    and all of those young voters will fade out if Hillary wins the Dem nomination

    February 8, 2008 at 5:00 pm |
  125. Steve from Iowa

    2 words, Barack Obama

    February 8, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  126. Linda


    We have had an inexperienced person in the White House for the past 7 years and that's one reason that the country is in the state it's in. I can't imagine putting another one in!

    The media can't stop talking about Obama and has made him a rock star. Just look at the faces in the photo accompanying your article. It frightens me to think that 19 year olds with no or little experience will determine the fate of this election.

    Colorado Springs

    February 8, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  127. Katy Hill Prescott, Az.

    Because after 7 years of the Bush/Cheney administration they have had a good look at how much harm a bad president can do.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  128. Bruce St Paul MN

    Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. Plus, compared to all the usual suspects, including Ms Clinton, Barack Obama sound s like a revolutionary. The traditional "American dream" must seem like a joke to most young people. Work hard, save your money, work your way up the ladder, and someday your boss will outsource your job, the CEO will steal your pension, your mortgage company will forclose, your health coverage will be cancelled and your contaminated groundwater will make you break out in boils. I think the hopeful message from Obama resonates with them and makes them want to change the world.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:02 pm |
  129. Angel

    I believe young people are fired up because, much like the young people of the 60s, they realize that they will soon inherit this world; and they have been so turned off by what they've seen the older generations doing to this country and this world that they are finally ready to take control of their inheritance again.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  130. Ron, Oregon

    "This stuff is very encouraging. The turnout of young people actually represented the winning margin of victory in some states. For example, Barack Obama won Missouri by just 10,000 votes. That's a state where 75,000 young people voted for him. The fact is Obama probably owes thanks to young people for a lot of his Super Tuesday victories. In fact, Obama won the youth vote in 19 of the 22 states that voted on Tuesday."

    I just hope that the Democratic establishment takes note and doesn't continue to railroad Clinton into the nomination. They'll lose a lot of those voters in November if it seems that they are less willing to change. Look at Obama's speech in Newhampshire. His rally in IDAHO, his victories in Kansas, South Carolina, Georgia Missouri. The man can move people just like Bill did in the early 90s. Young America relates to him, his message, his style. We do not want to vote for our grandparents.
    Obama would destroy McCain in the general election, Hillary would just galvanize the right.

    We can change this country, this world. We can hope for a better tomorrow.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  131. Ron SD CA

    Hi Jack:

    In 1980 I attended college FULL TIME. I had a studio apartment near campus which cost $180.00 a month. I purchased everything I needed plus paid tuition, it was almost free back then in CA. I was able to sustain myself on a part time job.

    Young people do not have that option currently. That same small studio apartment today is $1195.00 a month. What student or young individual starting out could afford that? I see young, homeless people and family's living out of cars because they were put out of their home. They couldn't pay for it. This is so wrong. We need a new president, someone who is going to care about those who are suffering in this country. That is why you see so many young people out there. They can't wait to send President Bush to the unemployment line. And neither can I.

    Best Regards,
    Ron K. San Diego

    February 8, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  132. Kevin, Paris

    I think that they now realize that there is a lot at stake and everything is open so everything can happen, and they now they can change the world.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  133. jim

    I was young once......................supported Kennedy for change and then supported Reagan 28 yrs ago for change. I support what most younger folks are feeling now. Even this person soon to be 60 + years is all fired up for change. I support OBAM and all the young folks that feel the same. I've put my check book where my hope and dreams are for the next generation of voters and dreamers. Please DO NOT let Hillary and Bill convience you that what your are seeing are fairytales. This country was founded on dreams and fairy tales. Those old Foggie political machines like the Clintons thrive on deceit. Remember a little less than nine years ago Bill was being impeached and lied to all of us with a telivision message. Do you really want that person living with a PRESIDENT of the UNITED STATES??? Obama is that brillent individual who can make all of us work together to overcome all of these issues........many of these issues have been caused by Hillary and Polosi and the SUPER DELEGATES all of their years of experience. Take notes and do the research. A new ERA has come............it is your turn to lead this party out of mediocrity and greed and selfishness. Lets all make it happen.......DO NOT SETTLE for less than the best...................GO OBAMA

    February 8, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  134. Christine from California

    There are many reasons for their interests but the most important come down to 2 people – George W Bush and Barack Obama – a pariah and a charismatic visionary.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  135. sandy

    For the same reason I was interested in the election of John F. Kennedy. These kids see a light at the end of the tunnel when they see Barak Obama, and well they should see that light. He is a bright light in this dark world and I hope the people of this country see that light before it's too late. I just hope the "Washington elite" don't screw him over.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:05 pm |
  136. Mike

    Young people are fired up about Obama is because he's fresh, different, and cool. Their admiration for him is all about style and not substance. What do you expect from the same group that is obsessed with Britney Spears and Paris Hilton?

    February 8, 2008 at 5:05 pm |
  137. Juana

    A few reasons, I think :
    First, the REAL beginning of the election season coincided with the airing of the last few new episodes of many favorite television shows, due to the ongoing writers' strike. Not that I mind, this is better reality than sticking a bunch of drunk women in a house and having them compete over some tired looking aging former musician or a "gameshow" in which people are forced to reveal thier deepest ugliness for "fabulous" cash and prizes.
    Second, the election buzzword: CHANGE. People love change; in a consumerist society such as we live in presently, anything that is novel, new, or different than the normal (or usual) is touted as GOOD, in a sickly fundamental way. Hopefully, these young people are paying attention to what kinds of change the candidates are endorsing.
    Third, and this is debatable, the remaining candidates (and a few that have now left the campaigning to others) are better looking than in previous election. It's easier to watch them on the television when they give speeches. Think back to the first televised Kennedy/Nixon debate. Not to take anything away from Kennedy or his leadership of this country, but let's face it in a nation where beautiful people are valued more highly than normal-looking people we can't be suprised that there is more attention being paid to this election.
    Just a few thoughts

    Moline, IL

    February 8, 2008 at 5:05 pm |
  138. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Young people don't focus on what has been, they focus on the here and now. They use the internet very effectively exchanging information and they love commercials. I believe they have always had an interest in elections but were shut out.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:06 pm |
  139. CJ in Roanoke, VA

    Young people are interested because they dread the prospect of paying into social security and medicare, the greatest ponzi scheme ever devised by the gov't. Or maybe it's because they don't want a graying electorate making decisions for their generation anymore.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:06 pm |
  140. Tom Jackson

    It's because Obama and Hillary are a bunch of drama queens. Its ridiculous its like really awful plays everytime they go to a debate. And also its a bad idea to attract these crowds of youth because half of them arent going to vote.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:06 pm |
  141. Craig

    Radio talk show host on Sirius, Bill Press, said that Al Gore is gonna be endorsing Barack Obama. True?

    February 8, 2008 at 5:07 pm |
  142. Ken KS

    Good for the young people of this country. They've awakened to see the disaster Bush/Cheney/Rove/Wolfowitz and gang have created. Maaybe they can undo some of the folly that my generation, the baby boomers, helped create.

    It's too bad Ron Paul is so ignored in the media. I see more signs in the yards for him than any of the others combined, even in the homes of young couples.

    They know that McCain, OBama and Clinton are U.S. senators and talk a great talk, yet these three have done nothing to change things during there time in office when the opportunity is here for them to do so. So these three senators are going to fix our country once one of them are sworn in in January 2009? Not likely.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:07 pm |
  143. Steve, NYC, NY

    Looking at the picture, I can't help but think that all these young people are jumping on the badwagon for this 'megastar' and not even realizing what he is about. I don't trust Barrack, the media is giving him a pass despite many suspicious activities. This is not a popularity contest, we really need to think about what we are doing. If the young people help vote in an incompentent President solely on his looks and charm, we will see another 4 years of screwups.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:08 pm |
  144. Lois

    It's all about gender and race.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:08 pm |
  145. Ryan from PA

    Young people have been directly affected by the 8 years of George W. Bush and they are excited that, for the first time since 2000, his name will not be on the ballot. Barack Obama is well aware that young people can make a difference, if inspired, and that's why he speaks so directly to them in his message. Any politician who inspires the next generation like Barack Obama deserves to be the next President of the United States.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:09 pm |
  146. Walter - San Francisco, CA

    Trish: Please do not take offence, but that was said like a true member of a generation that sees its grasp on power in this country diminishing.

    We're all so jaded, it's easy to be cynical towards a message of hope and change. We've been lied to so much that we don't wish to believe.

    Young people have been presented an opportunity like no other, and they are grabbing it by the horns.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:09 pm |
  147. Thomas In Canada

    Lots of reasons...... media coverage, the wars currently ongoing, the economy, the dynamics of the canditates, the current lack of direction and leadership for the country and most importantly, the realization real choices have to be made that affect their futures. When you affect someones life, they tend to care a lot more.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:10 pm |
  148. DDRP

    Young people are naive and have no sense of history. They have no appreciation for the fact that the best years in this nation history for peace and prosperity were the Clinton years. – They did more for the middle class, women, children, blacks, and latinos.

    Obama has no original thought: Most of his policies are based on those formed by Hillary Cinton. Even his "YES WE CAN" was co-opted from Mexican farm workers ("Si se puede!") Cesar Chaves and Dolores Huerta (who endorsed Clinton) were the ones who originally came up with the slogan.

    It's evident that most of these students are victims of Bush's EVERY CHILD LEFT BEHIND policy. WAKE UP students, and study history, instead of falling for three-word phrases.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:12 pm |
  149. Kate Gregory

    It's about time people recognized that young people are not indifferent to politics. The media is acting as if students have never cared, and this could not be farther from the truth. Finally we're able to show that we can make a difference, and I can't wait to see how it changes the way the presidential candidates campaign!

    February 8, 2008 at 5:12 pm |
  150. Jacob Scott

    Because your generation has destoryed our future

    February 8, 2008 at 5:12 pm |
  151. David

    Well that's a no-brainer Jack... it's because young people are tired of having a no-brainer for president for the past 7 years.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:12 pm |
  152. Laurence

    One word: Obama

    February 8, 2008 at 5:12 pm |
  153. Dee

    One word.... OBAMA!!!

    February 8, 2008 at 5:13 pm |
  154. Rebecca Columbus, OH

    As a young person (20 years old), I am interested in this election because the government has gone down the toilet in the past 8 years and I wasn't able to vote yet in 2004 to try to turn things around. Young people like me are also extremely inspired by Barack Obama, who gives us hope that we can change things in this country. My life has been governed entirely by the Bush and Clinton families, and I'm working to see something new.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:13 pm |
  155. Ian

    Five simple words: George Bush and Barack Obama.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:13 pm |
  156. patrick

    three numbers, 911

    February 8, 2008 at 5:13 pm |
  157. Lou

    What hasn't been reported, Jack, is that Hillary won the 18-24 year-old vote both in Massachusetts, which has a gazillion colleges and universities and where the Kennedy juggernaut pulled out all the stops - and in California, where every trend happens first. Let's talk about a new trend.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:13 pm |
  158. Sean B

    You want to know why the youth is getting involved; it is because we are sick and tired of these political leaders living with a 20th century mentality in a 21st century world.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:13 pm |
  159. David Dearth

    Why are youth voters so fired up? TWO WORDS: BARACK OBAMA

    Bozeman, Montana

    February 8, 2008 at 5:13 pm |
  160. John

    Yeah were fired up. I am 25 and am sick of having to see prices of everything going up.. accept for my salary!

    We want change.. Vote Obama!

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  161. K. Estey

    100 years in Iraq – DRAFT

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  162. Jeffrey Quintero

    Three words: Obama! Obama! Obama!

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  163. Brandon Blakeney

    This will be the first presidential election I will be able to vote in. I am very excited to be able to cast my ballot for Ron Paul. He has cured my apathy about politics and is an example of how we can change for the better. I will vote for him in November if I have to write-in his name!

    Brandon in Laurel, MS

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  164. Alex P.

    As a voter in the young people bloc, I can sum up why we turned out in this huge a number in one phrase: We're tired of getting screwed over by people that claim to know what's best for us.

    Alex P.
    San Francisco, CA

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  165. Dave

    The main reason young people are interested in the election is simple; the writer's strike. With nothing else on TV, why not tune into the reality show that actually affects our lives?

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  166. Maureen Montrose

    Young people are so motivated in this election because for the first time, there exists a cadidate running for president that actually cares about us. That candidate is Barack Obama. No other candidate in the past has been able to motivate and engage young voters like Barack Obama has, and is currently doing so. For the future of America, Barack the Vote!

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  167. Obie

    Go figure..Young people are tired of George Bush, We are tired of our friends going dying in the desert of Iraq and in the mountains of Afganistan. we are tired of paying too much so we can get a college education, we are also tired of coming out of school to NO JOBS..We want Change, and Barack Obama represents that to us.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  168. Chris M, Fresno, CA

    The loss of the 3,000+ American lives in the Middle East has had an impact on millions here at home, including their friends and siblings. Most of the casualties are in the age range that you cite. It seems to me that one caused the other.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  169. John

    Because this is the first time since 1968 that those under 30 even care about an election. Like in 1968, younger voters are concerned that the "establishment" could care less about them because it is more of the "status quo." That is what brought us out then, and it is what brings them out now.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  170. Paakow

    Because for once in my life time, I have been made to feel important by a presidential candidate – namely – 'Barrack Obama'

    I get his emails and the content of his emails, shows me that he truly does care about my opinion and what I have to say.

    I think I speak for the rest of the youth and young voters when I say this.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  171. Alix

    Jack, we're interested in this election for the same reason anyone is. We know that politics effects the lives of us all, and we're passionate about what we believe in. I'm personally fed up with the state of the nation, fed up with the war in Iraq, and want to do everything in my power to make my country a better place.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  172. Alok from Toledo, OH

    Young people have so much at stake during this election: Iraq, the economy, healthcare. No one wants to pay off the debts of our parent's generation.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  173. Will from Louisiana

    I'm a university junior who has spent the last 7 years of my political consciousness itching to vote against the policies the conservative right has used to destroy my country. My party has finally come up with quality delegates who I passionately want to put in the White House. That's why I'm "revved up."

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  174. Kevin

    Jack, the answer to the question is simple: Barack Obama. Hillary Clinton will not get the same demographic in the general election if she is the Democratic nominee.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  175. Tim

    You can call them the "Obama Generation". This next generation does not focus on 1 outstanding issue like Civil Rights, the Cold War, the Iraq War, as other generations have done. This Obama Generation is concerned about and has opinions about a multitude of issues. The country is in the crapper and the Obama kids want it back.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  176. James Martin

    For a great many voters, it'll be the first time in THEIR lifetime that they have a chance to vote for someone other than a Clinton or a Bush.
    THAT IN AND OF ITSELF is a great reason to celebrate AND take an avid interest in the election, the process itself and in their future. It makes no nevermind that they also have a chance to see history made by electing a black man or a woman to the highest office in the land, it's a change in direction they want.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  177. Jordy

    Dear Jack, I'm a 21 year old College of Charleston student and there is a tremendous explosion of young voters at the polls. Why? Look at the candidates. A white woman, a black man, a war hero, and a Baptist minister all walk into a bar...

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  178. Kevin, Illinois

    Young people are tired of the Baby Boomers screwing up our country. It is a vastly different world that most people over 60 are disconnected with. Young people can relate to Barack Obama because young people want to have an optimistic future. Hillary comes off like a know-it-all grandmother trying to threaten you into doing it her way... and let's face it; we never do what our Parents want us to. lol

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  179. Brian Thompson

    The 2004 election,

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  180. Celeste Guerrero

    Hey, if last Tuesday was an example of how the young people will turn out to vote, give them an F. There were thousands of them at the Meadowland chanting for change and Hillary won New Jersey big time.They were in Boston with Teddy and Caroline and Hillary won big time. They were in California with Oprah, Caroline, Michelle and Maria and they lost. Lesson learned? They love to go to big events. Remember when "the Boss" campaigned for kerry and they had to block off all the streets in Philly. He lost.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  181. nick

    I feel that we need to write in vote for Mitt Romney in all remaining states in hopes of getting a true conservative. This is to save our future. What a story this would be if we could give Mitt the remaining delegates he needs.

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |
  182. Adolph

    Barak Obama asked for the young vote and he is getting it. Young people everywhere see that we have a chance to change this country for the better. This is a dream come true. No more do we have to conform to what those powerful hypocrites in the system say. If youth is identified with hope not yet disappointed, then I say let the hope of a better country and society win. Baton Rouge, LA

    February 8, 2008 at 5:14 pm |