Obama and the Youth Vote: How the President is Trying to Win Back Young People


No doubt the Obama campaign is suffering from a lack of enthusiasm – well, at least compared to the out-of-control-bring-the-house-down-face-melting kind of enthusiasm we witnessed in 2008. 

As young people, we expected so much; a great economy, affordable health insurance, advances in gays and women’s rights. But it has been tough and not every campaign promise was kept. In retrospect, though, while it hasn’t been perfect, Obama certainly achieved a lot. 

Remember when he repealed DADT? Ended the war in Iraq? Approved of gay marriage? Improved the economy? Those are just a few of the significant contributions President Obama has made in the past four years. 

And I know, he’s not perfect, Congress is an embarrassment, and you wish college cost less. But that’s no reason to let Romney/Ryan win in 2012. As the Rumpus points out, “To sum up: We plan to punish President Obama by electing an arch-conservative to rule the most powerful nation on Earth. This is the logic out there.” 

At this point, if we don’t work towards reelection, we’re just punishing ourselves. If you want to see change, if you want the president you voted for four years ago, now is not the time to give up – even if you’ve been a bit disappointed with his recent term.

No one understands the enthusiasm conundrum better than the 90 Days, 90 Reasons initiative, started by Dave Eggers (author of the popular A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius) and Jordan Kurland who both “looked around and saw that many of Obama’s voters and donors from 2008 needed to be reminded of all he has accomplished, and all he will do if given another term." 

Essentially, the cite posts a new essay written by influential pop culture or political figures everyday for ninety days with each essay giving a different reason to vote for President Obama. And while it sounds like it may become redundant, each essay is truly creative and carries the distinct voice of their writers. Some contributors include Jesse Eisenberg, Lemony Snicket, and Ben Gibbard who all gave unique (and somewhat comical) reasons for voting Obama/Biden in 2012.

90 Days, 90 Reasons offers a refreshing look at Obama’s presidency, reminds us why it was important to vote Obama in 2008 (and why it’s necessary now), and generates grim predictions of a Romney/Ryan White House. Voters desperately need inspiration and, as Eggers and Kurland hoped, this project delivers.