Obama's Youth Mandate Far Greater Than JFK's

His lead with under-30s is biggest in 'modern American history'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Nov 8, 2008 9:42 AM CST
In this Nov. 4, 2008 file photo, young supporters of Barack Obama voice their support for him early on election day in New York.    (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
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(Newser) – Barack Obama enters office with the biggest youth mandate in modern political history, Politico reports. He outpolled John McCain by 34 points—66% to 32%—among voters younger than 30. That's four times the margin that led John F. Kennedy to say, “The torch has been passed to a new generation.” It's the first time youths have voted so differently from their elders in postwar America.

A few other figures:

  • Obama was the first Democrat to break 45% among young whites in 3 decades, with 54%.
  • The youth vote made up 18% of the electorate in ’08, one point higher than the past three elections.
  • About 53% of eligible youths voted, the highest since 1992.
  • At 76%, Obama’s success with young Hispanics was 14 points higher than Kerry's in 2004.
  • Obama took half of young working-class white men, 10 points ahead of any Democrat since the Reagan years.