As the 2016 election rages on, each side surely has a lot of questions for the other: How can you support that candidate? How could you possibly belong to your party when this issue is at stake? In the case of this election (though, it will depend on whom you ask), there are certainly a lot of questions that could be lobbed at conservative voters. What's more, liberal voters have a good deal of questions for conservative millennial voters in particular.
It's no secret that a majority of millennials lean Democratic, and for some, this may seem like the obvious choice; only about 30 percent of millennials identify themselves with the GOP, according to a study by the Pew Research Center. Looking further into that statistic, the Pew Research Center likewise found that 30 percent of Republican millennials tend to be far less conservative than generations before them. So not only are young people less likely to side with the Republican party, but they bring a fresher, decidedly more liberal outlook to the table that relies on different value systems pertaining to issues like race, gender, and sexuality.
But this only raises more questions, such as what makes a conservative millennial in this social landscape? Here are some questions for those voters:
1. What Did You Think Of The GOP Primary Race?
The GOP race to the nomination was declared a massive, terrifying circus by leading Democrats. Did young conservative voters think similarly about the primaries, or see it as organized chaos?
2. Do You Think Donald Trump Represents The Party?
Though establishment Republicans are slowly starting to warm up to Donald Trump, the collective party spent a good deal of time and effort trying to stop him. But it begs the question: Does Trump's off-the-cuff style (that being an understatement) appeal to the younger crowd? If that's the case, it could mean a real shift in direction for the party as more and more millennials enter both the party itself and the work force.
3. How Do You Reconcile Shifting Social Attitudes With A Party That Seems Unwilling To Change Along With The Times?
While young conservatives may be growing more liberal, their representatives largely seem to be staying the same. State legislators, for example, have put transgender rights in the spotlight with their passage of discriminatory anti-LGBT bills this year that target transgender individuals. If millennial conservatives are indeed becoming more liberal, then how do they reconcile with representatives that may not reflect their attitudes in such drastic ways?
4. How Can Someone Be Fiscally Conservative But Socially Liberal?
One common phrase young GOP voters claim is that they are "fiscally conservative but socially liberal." This is a bit of a stretch; in order for social welfare programs to exist, they must first be funded. To be socially liberal means you must also support the funds needed to achieve those social goals. Doesn't one kind of negate the other?
5. If You Went To College, Did Your College Experience Change Or Strengthen Your Views At All?
Colleges tend to be more liberal, so millennial conservatives are often left with a choice: double down on their own conservative views, or accept the attitudes found in many colleges. This, possibly, could be part of the reason why Republican millennials are less conservative than their parents.
6. Have Your Views On President Obama Changed At All During His Time In Office?
President Obama has enjoyed a surge in popularity, and let's face it, he's undeniably cool. It's worth wondering whether or not conservative voters have fallen for the president's swagger, too, despite sitting on different sides of the aisle.
7. Would You Ever Support A Democratic Candidate If They Championed The Right Issue?
Some issues cross party lines, and for millennials, one of those issues surely has to be student loan debt. Bernie Sanders has proposed a tuition-free, debt-free path to a college education. Would that be enough for some conservative voters to jump their party's ship?
8. Which Candidate Best Represented Young Conservatives' Positions?
A whole host of candidates graced the Republican stage before ultimately bowing out to Trump. Which candidate spoke best to conservative millennials' attitudes? This would say a lot about how and where they stand on issues.
9. If There's One Thing You Could Change About The GOP, What Would It Be?
Each party has their flaws, and as millennials age, they become more apt at figuring out what those problems are. Having young conservatives highlight one flaw within the GOP would tell both inquisitive minds and their own party where to start in order to move forward.
If anyone is going to enact change within the GOP, conservative millennials could do it. And questioning your party's status quo — whether through reflection or from an outside source — is the best way to do just that.