Nothing creates an open mind like four straight years of economic misery.
Mitt Romney has a historic opportunity to gain the support young voters who have been devastated by the economic policies of President Obama. Polls have showed him close at only 8 percent behind the president, and he has 12 days to win their support.
But, President Obama will not go down without a fight. This Friday, President Obama will appear on MTV for “ASK OBAMA LIVE: An MTV Interview with the President” where he will answer the questions and concerns of young Americans. The President–who won 66 percent of the youth vote in 2008–will do everything he can to appeal to the under-30 crowd once again because he needs to win 55 percent of the youth vote to have a chance at a second term.
Mitt Romney has also been invited by MTV to take part in a similar event. He should do it. This is one of the last chances he has to make the case to young people that they must hire him on November 6th if they wish to see a positive economic change. To make his case, he needs to hit President Obama on the three main issues that have affected young Americans: unemployment, student loan debt, and Obamacare.
No other president has averaged a higher youth unemployment rate–17.5 percent–in recorded history. Approximately 4.7 million young Americans under 30 are unemployed and looking for jobs, representing 40 percent of the unemployment population. The Obama economy is strangling the private sector, which is barely producing 145,000 jobs a month. This isn’t enough to make up for the 397,000 youth jobs that have been lost in the last four years.
Student Loan Debt
Under President Obama, graduates leave college with $27,000 in student loan debt on average. The president’s easy student loan policies have driven the cost of tuition up by 25 percent in the last four years. Students are forced to take out massive loans to pay for a college degree that isn’t worth what it used to be. Half of college graduates lack basic math and reading skills and students only have a 50 percent chance of finding a full-time job after graduation. With no job prospects, students are having a hard time paying off these massive loans. Student loan default rates are at an all-time high of 13 percent. These numbers will keep rising if President Obama is reelected.
President Obama’s broken-record message that “kids under 26” can stay on their parents’ healthcare plan is just a cheap gimmick. First of all, most private plans were already allowing young adults to stay on their parents’ plan. Second of all, you can only say on your parents’ plan if you are unemployed. Virtually all employers must cover their employees. Any business with with over 50 employees is mandated to cover its employees, and any smaller businesses receive huge tax breaks for employee coverage. While this “under 26” provision doesn’t help anyone, other provisions and price controls will raise the cost of covering young people by 45 percent. College student insurance plans have already spiked as much as 1,112 percent.
Young people are looking for answers to these problems, and Mitt Romney must address them if he wants to win their support. Many young people don’t understand that President Obama is the root cause as to why they aren’t seeing jobs and why they’re stuck in parental dependency.
Mitt Romney needs to take his message to MTV. Young Americans might be more open to conservative ideas than the campaign suspects.
By Celia Bigelow and Ron Meyer, American Majority Action