Aug 20, 2018

MTV midterm campaign targets the youth vote

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MTV is launching a new digital campaign during its annual Video Music Awards Monday night that aims to encourage young people to register to vote in the November midterm elections.

Flashback: The initiative is similar to the network’s “Choose or Lose” campaign when former Democratic President Bill Clinton was elected in 1992, the AP notes.

The details: MTV is working with non-partisan organizations, leading artists and activists to attract young voters and register them to vote. The campaign would also allow people to check whether their friends are registered.

  • On election day, MTV is planning to host some 1,000 parties across the country to celebrate the youth vote.

The backdrop: MTV's campaign is the latest to target the crucial bloc of young voters for this year’s midterm elections.

  • Last week, liberal activist and billionaire Tom Steyer unveiled plans to register 100,000 college students across 11 states through his NextGen America organization, which already registered 80,000 millennials.
  • And Parkland student activists seeking stricter gun laws have been making similar voter outreach efforts for the past few months.
  • A recent analysis by TargetSmart found that these ongoing efforts have already increased voter registration among people 29 and younger across battleground states following the February 14 Parkland shooting.

The big picture: While MTV has billed the campaign as a nonpartisan effort, it's expected to be more beneficial to Democrats. Studies have shown that young people are more likely to support Democratic candidates.

  • Yes, but young people typically do not show up at the polls in great numbers. If they do show up in November, they have the potential to shape the outcome of the midterm elections, particularly races in crucial swing states.

Go deeper: First look: Harvard poll sees wave of young voters this fall; Youth voter registration spiked in battleground states after Parkland shooting

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