Elections have come and gone and we have learned many lessons:

  • People love to Instagram their voting stickers.
  • The country wants change.
  • The youth vote DOMINATED the polls.

Soaring to nearly 114 million voters between the ages of 18-24 (up from 83 million in 2014), the youth vote came out kicking ass and writing down names. With the millennial generation (who have carried the torch for the resurgence of voting importance), aging out of that age bracket, it’s impressive to see the next generation fill those shoes.

CNN’s exit polls are reporting that 7% of voters were 18-24, while 6% were 25-29, keeping the bar of 13% set in the last election held high. When you take into account the dramatic rise in voters, while keeping the percentage steady at 13%, it’s truly a bold statement by the next generation.

The exit polls are showing that the 2018 midterms were dominated by the youth vote.

So why the surging upswing in bold ballot bashing from the youth?

Peer pressure. 

Now I’m not saying that it’s a bad thing here; let’s take that negative connotation out of it for a second. Go back on your social feed and count all of the “I voted” stickers, “Go Vote”, and other social calls to action that your friends posted.

Go ahead… I’ll wait… Still not done? Didn’t think so.

It’s a hell of a lot of people going to the polls, making their voices heard, and broadcasting their experience. And what happens when everyone’s doing it? We want to as well. We want that group experience; to be able to talk about a collective movement. It’s not who you voted for, but that you voted.

Giving into that positive peer pressure allows you to be part of the team and discuss viewpoints – all with the physical call to action of research and ballot selection to elect an official.

This “team mentality” is fueled by social campaigns, targeted marketing, and years of studies on the importance of communication. Whether these messages are paid for by the Left, Right, Middle, or Middle Earth, it doesn’t matter. The marketing agencies did their job and connected directly with the demographic that is so highly sought after.

So, I guess peer pressure, in the right situation, can be a good thing. I’m not saying that if everyone jumps off a bridge you should follow, but if everyone is buying me drinks, you should absolutely open up a tab.

Author

Ryan is the content guy at Rareview and thankfully, not related to the Pearsons. Bringing over a decade of writing to the table, as well as a hefty pour of bourbon, his delusions of grandeur keep him writing and drinking.

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