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The Youth Vote: Playing to Their Parents

10:31 AM, Aug 30, 2012 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
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Among the more trenchant lines from Paul Ryan's speech was this:

College graduates should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life.

It played well with the audience. Unsurprisingly. And to some students of the great game that is American politics, it suggested the possibility that Ryan – being relatively young and familiar with the right kind of music and so forth – might be capable of prying some of the youth vote away from President Obama.  

If the economic woes of the young (and Ryan didn't mention student loan debt) are not enough to move the youth vote, the line about them living in their "childhood bedrooms" will almost certainly resonate with their parents who have problems enough of their own, in this economy, and would just as soon have junior out of the house and on his own.  

It will be, we are constantly informed, a very close election.  So perhaps the "get the kids out of your house and into one of their own" vote will be enough to tip things.  

If not, it still serves as a lens, focusing the voters' attentions on the severity of our economic doldrums in which the young cannot find work so they move in with their parents who cannot afford to retire.  

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