OUCovers16 Survey: Millennials Will Play a Key Role Come Tuesday

All survey data stories information was self-collected by a survey run by OUCovers16 for two weeks in October. The data has been interpreted by the Political Science Department Chair, Dr. Keith Gaddie, and the subsequent stories are from the interpreted data. 

Bekah York | OUCovers16 Reporter | @BekahYork

The generation of cell phones, selfies and college debt may play a crucial  role in this year’s election. Although millennials, make up a smaller portion of the Oklahoma electorate compared to states nationwide, their vote will  still a vital asset, in choosing the next president of the United States.

More than half of Oklahoma millennials plan to vote for Hillary Clinton according to the OUCovers16 survey.

Monica Avila is one of them. Avila plans to vote for Hillary Clinton in the upcoming election, despite being a Bernie Sanders supporter in the primary season. Her family, however, has supported Clinton from the beginning.

“Honestly the major reason for my vote is because I do do not want Trump to win the election,” Avila said.

Although she doesn’t necessarily want Clinton, she prefers her over Trump. Twenty-eight percent of Oklahoma millennials don’t want Clinton, but will be voting for her.

Oklahoman Millennial Votes

Graphic by: Pam Ortega, OUCovers16 Editor, @pamortega17

Avila expressed concern about Donald Trump’s lack of political background, but also opposed the negativity and controversial comments coming from the Trump campaign, specifically toward minorities.

“As a Hispanic woman I have felt offended by many of his comments and I do not want a person of his character and hatred running our country and truly worry for the future of this country if he does win,” Avila said.

She’s not alone. Seventy-two percent of Oklahoma Hispanic millennials surveyed plan to vote for Clinton, while only 8 percent plan to vote for Trump.

With the Sooner State  traditionally being conservative, it is not uncommon that fifty-four percent of survey respondents were raised in Republican households, while thirty one percent were raised by Democratic parents

Despite half of the respondents being raised by Republicans, only 14 percent said they planned to vote for Trump. One in five millennials raised by Republicans plan to vote for Hillary Clinton.

Parental Influence on Oklahoman Millennials' Vote

Graphic by: Pam Ortega, OUCovers16 Editor, @pamortega17

Fourteen percent of millennials raised by Republicans don’t want either candidate. Ryleigh Navert’s is one of them.

She’s a conservative from Boise, but is a registered independent in Oklahoma.

Navert’s parents are both conservative, but she’ll only be voting differently than her father. She and her mother couldn’t rally around Trump.

“I know people say that third party votes don’t matter but if Clinton is elected and a large portion of the population voted for a third party candidate, that sends a message to her administration that she’s going to have to change some of her stances on things,” Navert said.

But for some the outcome of the election is not their main concern, the relationship between Americans post the election is.

Avila feels the election has deeply divided the country and has caused the nation to take steps backward rather than improve progress.

“I feel that we have become even more segregated from each other and I worry about what will happen post election especially with all the people that feel as if they’re voices are not being heard,” Avila said.

Nevertheless, we will have to wait until Tuesday to measure the millennial vote’s impact.

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