When it comes to young voters, Hillary Clinton is tied with Marco Rubio. Liberals in the media can’t handle this news.
Some have provided an opinionated, but fair view. The Washington Examiner points to Jamelle Bouie’s “smart piece” for Slate, noting that the article makes it “plain that that’s a development the writer doesn’t welcome, but he does understand it.”
Others are not so charitable.
Salon: “Dear Generation X: Don’t believe the Marco Rubio hype”
In his piece, Scott Timberg tries to turn Rubio’s own demographic against him.
Timberg throws out how Rubio “weirdly” is “getting through to millennials much better than we’d expect, given their reputation for liberalism.” He also notes that “as friendly and sane as Rubio might appear on the surface — considering the current GOP competition — the idea of him becoming president is chilling.”
What Timberg seems to be so stuck on is how young conservative voters actually exist, which Bouie acknowledged. Not only is it “chilling” that Rubio could become president, but Timberg writes that an “even scarier… thought” is how Rubio “is in some ways culturally a millennial, just part of a rising conservative wedge.”
In closing, Timberg assures readers that Xers “still vote”and that Rubio is “a wolf in sheep’s clothing.” He also implores voters to “call this guy out when he speaks for his generation.”
The Daily Beast: “Marco Rubio, Gen-X Fraud.”
Ana Marie Cox employs the same attempt as Timberg, who had also pointed to her piece. There’s this notable paragraph:
Take away Rubio’s biography and look at his positions and he becomes less the voice of his generation and more Benjamin Button. If I told you about a candidate that was anti-marriage equality, anti-immigration reform (for now), anti-pot decriminalization, pro-government surveillance, and in favor of international intervention but against doing something about climate change, what would you guess the candidate’s age to be? On all of those issues, Rubio’s position is not the one shared by most young people. The Guardian dubbed him the “John McCain of the millennial set,” which isn’t fair to McCain, who at least has averred that climate change exists.
As Cox continues her rant, it turns into denigrating not merely Rubio’s appeal to the youth vote, of which she notes “just might work” because “it is fundamentally insincere.” Thus, Rubio and the GOP are not “competing for the youth vote at all… but for the old rich white guys who think they know what the youth of the country want.”
MSNBC: “Marco Rubio: A traitor to his generation?”
Emma Margolin uses yet another similar title to the other two. Her piece focuses on millennials and their issues, though speaks to only one side of the demographic: those who have a liberal viewpoint. While Cox calls him Benjamin Button, Margolin says Rubio is “more like a grandpa.”
Marlin takes particular issue with Rubio’s remarks on how a Supreme Court under his presidency would handle same-sex marriage. She notes that they were “a little surprising for Rubio, who often plays up his youth on the campaign trail – or at least, tries to – stressing education reform, his own student loans, and the game Candy Crush.”
She suggests that Rubio and the GOP ought to become more liberal on social issues.
With each statement on social issues, the vision of Rubio as a fresh alternative to Clinton becomes an increasingly hard sell. That’s not just an image problem for Rubio; it’s an existential crisis for the GOP, which is facing a demographic slide. Republicans are literally dying off, and unless the party makes inroads with millennials – who could cast more ballots than baby boomers by 2020 – the GOP won’t survive.
DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Shortly before Tuesday’s GOP debate, Wasserman Schultz was asked on a conference call if she was fearful of Rubio’s appeal with millennial voters.
Her typical response noted that “when millennials get a good close look, they’ll see what we see in Florida, that there’s no ‘there’ there.”
The DNC Chair also brought in partisan politics. She claimed that millennials will find his views to be “the most extreme on the issues that are important to millennials,” specifically with same-sex marriage and abortion. Washerman Schultz added that “millennials have specifically embraced the idea that we need to make this country better together.”
Why is the left attacking Rubio? Likely, they’re afraid, and they feel threatened by the fact that their front-runner may not be so set to become president if Rubio is the nominee.