Now that the worst election in American history is over, the dust is starting to settle and we're all looking around trying to figure out what the next step is. As in the last two presidential elections, the spotlight has been on the Millennial generation, a key Obama electorate in 2008 that has remained, to varying degrees, under the thumb of the Democratic party throughout the ensuing eight years. So, some are wondering: how many millennials voted for Donald Trump?
Especially after Clinton won the nomination over Bernie Sanders, millennials have been largely dissatisfied with her. This has led to speculation over whether or not this younger group of voters jumped ship. With 37 percent of the millennial vote, Trump's popularity with millennial voters is surprising, yet it signals that the GOP still has trouble winning over the younger voting demographic.
Millennials, like women overall, were one of Trump's issue demographics — before he became the Republican nominee, Trump was already doing horribly with millennials, and has continued to do worse with them since being nominated and spiraling into a seething ball of anger on live television repeatedly, with less than 40 percent in favor of Trump weeks prior to the election. Although there was some worry that staunchly anti-Clinton supporters of Sanders might vote for Trump, it appears that the largely-millennial Sanders camp at the very least didn't defect to Trump, even if they weren't likely to vote for Clinton.
Millennial voters have been one of the most talked-about constituencies this election cycle, primarily because of how disillusioned they were with both Clinton and Trump. Their surprising fervor for Sanders, which precluded their dissatisfaction for two unpopular presidential candidates, made them even more of a conundrum to analysts who see them as a key electorate, but can't quite figure out how to engage them.
If nothing else, their disdain for the two-party system and arguably magical thinking about a candidate outside of it proves that millennials are truly the generation raised by the Obama presidency. They're part of a generation that has witnessed what appeared to be the precipice of great political change in his first campaign, but was let down perhaps even stronger than the rest of the country when that change didn't come. Though Trump and Sanders spoke to very different demographics, their seemingly revolutionary spirits were what their voters loved, and 37 percent of millennial voters decided that Trump's potential revolution was preferable to Clinton's perceived lack thereof.