Getting the Most out of Life

The 2016 Presidential Election: Millennials Seek Influence on Their Own Terms

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Millennials are the most independent generation yet, according to a survey from the Pew Research Center. Results from the survey show that half of Millennials now describe themselves as political independents. For a country that typically sways either red or blue, this could turn the 2016 presidential election on its head. But for the right candidate, it could turn out to be an incredible opportunity. This candidate will have to understand how to appeal to the Ubertarian: the Millennial voter who wants it all, is armed with unbiased information, and is often looking for a socially liberal, fiscally responsible candidate.

The Rise of the Ubertarian

As Ubertarians, Millenials represent a group who are progressive young professionals who love public transit and vote for improvements, but would just as likely call an Uber for their own convenience. They don’t feel like they have to pick a side, because they think everything should be personalized. Red or blue—they only see the colors they want, when they want. The way they choose the new president will certainly be no different.

How Millennials Can Influence the 2016 Presidential Election

The first step Millennials will take to influence this election will be to gather information. Figuring out whom to support is much easier for today’s Web-savvy Millennial. The website iSideWith helps undecided voters choose a candidate and political party affiliation based on their answers to key political questions. Once they have a better understanding of the candidates who best adhere to their values, they can visit several unbiased sources, such as Vote Smart, OnTheIssues.org, and FactCheck.org, to further research the candidates. Instead of paying attention to propaganda and advertisements, which generally provide slanted information, these sources give young voters the tools they need to make an informed decision on election day.

What Millennials Want in 2016

The Reason-Rupe 2014 Millennial Survey, conducted by the Reason Foundation, provides some intelligence about what young Americans really want from their nation’s capital. According to the survey, Millennials are open to nontraditional candidates, and 53 percent would support a socially liberal, fiscally conservative candidate. The majority of Millennials surveyed (78 percent) see the budget deficit and national debt as major problems. Many Millennials consider the government to be wasteful and inefficient; they want policies that decrease taxes and government spending. The candidate that fully comprehends Millennials’ needs will have a good chance at winning the support of the generation the Reason Foundation has dubbed “politically unclaimed.”

Millennials feel entitled to an America that doesn’t define itself in absolutes. They are aligned politically without regard for the status quo. Ultimately, they will vote with their hearts, but their hearts’ desires will be bolstered with bias-free knowledge. They want to rebuild America in their own image—dynamic, malleable, and, most importantly, self-determining. They are not afraid to completely upend the establishment to get what they want from the 2016 presidential election, because their America is personalized, just like everything else in their lives.

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LaTisha Styles is a motivational speaker, millennial money expert, and spokesperson specializing in simple finance for millennials. LaTisha is the producer and host of Young Finances TV, a weekly series featuring funny, insightful videos on the basics of personal finance. LaTisha has been quoted in Forbes and Mainstreet, featured in The Economist, and mentioned in US News as a top personal finance expert to follow on Twitter. You can follow LaTisha on Twitter for daily millennial money tips to budget, invest and achieve success!