George Washington University (B.A. and M.A.)
Digital Press Secretary, National Republican Congressional Committee
Andrew Clark currently works with the team at the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) as digital press secretary, directing the committee’s outreach to online conservatives and bridging the gap between communications and digital strategy. Before joining the NRCC, Clark worked as deputy digital rapid response director for Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign and as a digital strategist for Gabriel Gomez’s 2013 campaign for the Senate.
Why is it important that at this particular point in time, right-of-center youth become involved publicly, whether in politics, media, their communities, or another capacity?
There are a lot of conservative young people out there, all over the country. Particularly on college campuses — but also in general social activities — showing your “c” label can be somewhat of a faux pas. Many people get a false impression of what conservatism is from Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. Getting involved in a public way — whether you’re launching a blog, organizing in your community, or just talking to friends — is critical to removing the stigma that many in our generation feel conservatism has.
What must elected officials and others in positions of leadership do to make a right-of-center message resonate with the Millennial generation?
Ronald Reagan took conservatism and successfully turned its principles into solutions for many of the critical problems facing the country in the 1970s and 1980s. But to Millennials today, the Reagan presidency is the past. If we want a conservative message that resonates with Millennials, we have to find ways to clearly communicate how conservative principles can solve our 21st-century problems. Online innovation and digital strategy can help bridge that gap.
Where would you like to see the conservative movement in 10 years — and how can it get there?
Ideally, in ten years the conservative movement will be wrapping up the second term of a conservative president, and we will be able to embrace a reform-oriented, solutions-based record of governance. Hopefully the movement will be flowing with a new surge of energy from Millennials and other young people who believe in the movement’s conservative principles. Communicating a 21-st century message, and using digital tools to fully energize that message, will be the key.