A panel formed to speak at the California Democratic Party state convention admitted a troubling fact for the party: younger voters are no longer a dependable constituency.
Eric Swalwell, 35, an East Bay congressman who was the first member of Congress to endorse former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley for president, formed the panel. He said, “Regardless of whether you’re with Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton, there’s no question that right how Bernie Sanders has the overwhelming majority of the millennials. Whoever is the candidate, as a party we have to understand why that is the case. Authenticity is so, so important for millennials. Being able to really just speak without being seen as beholden to anyone is critically important,” according to the Los Angeles Times.
Democrats aren’t losing younger voters to the GOP, but rather to the lure of registering as independents. In November of 1992, roughly 7,410,914 voters registered as Democrats in the state. Since then, the total number of voters has risen by roughly 2.2 million, but Democrats have only gained 28,000 voters. The GOP has lost 826,000 voters in the same period.
That leaves the rest of the voters registered as nonpartisan. New voter registration data released by Secretary of State Alex Padilla last week showed 24% of California voters had no party preference.
Last week Breitbart News noted that Republican Party registration had cratered in the Golden State — again, in favor of independents.
Last summer, the left-leaning Public Policy Institute of California admitted that independents were up for grabs, stating, “In our surveys over the past year, independent likely voters were about equally likely to lean Democratic (37%) or Republican (34%).”