I-Team Report: Millennials and politics - WNEM TV 5

I-Team Report: Millennials and politics

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(Source: Pool via CNN) (Source: Pool via CNN)
SAGINAW COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -

Tuesday we find out who will lead our country for the next four years, and almost a third of those eligible to help make that decision are millennials born between about 1980 and 2000.

So the I-Team asked a group of Mid-Michigan millennials for their thoughts on this year’s election.

Studies show most millennials are Democrats. But when TV5 sat down with our panel of millennials, they weren’t exactly gung-ho toward either side.

"I am not voting for either because, to me, they both have faults," said Grayson Kennedy.

"They're both childish. I don't think either of them would be good," replied Christiana Waters.

Holly Borgerding, an undecided voter, had this to say.

"I know I need to make a decision soon and quick, but at this time I'm still on the fence and it's actually to the point where I'm not even sure I'm going to vote. I can't force myself to make a decision just because I'm kind of scared, honestly."

But others have made up their mind, including Logan Johnson and Kyle Harris who will be voting for Donald Trump on Tuesday.

"While Donald Trump was not my first choice, and in the primaries he was not who I supported, he is the Republican nominee and I really would like to see this country move in the direction that the Republican platform would take it," said Johnson.

"I'm supporting Trump. In the primary, he was not my candidate. Wasn't my first, wasn't my second and now I'm stuck with him. There are some things I don't like about Donald Trump, but, in general, he and the Republican platform represent my views in large part and so he's going to have my support at this point," Harris said.

Rebecca Corbin and Robert Schultz have also made up their mind and will cast their ballot for Hillary Clinton.

"I guess I'm the stereotypical millennial in this situation. I voted for Bernie Sanders in the primary. I'm definitely voting Clinton, there's not a doubt in my mind. I can't vote for Trump with how many groups he's put down. He does not understand the importance of international relations," said Corbin.

"I've actually voted for Trump in the primaries just because, at first, I was kind of like, he is that fresh air and he was that difference. But as time went on, you realize that you really cannot morally vote for Donald Trump I feel like. I'm pretty much just banking for Clinton at this point. I don't really agree with many of her policies, but I think at least we'd have someone who'd listen to people around her and would make a wise decision off her advice. And then I'm just looking forward to 2020 at this point," said Schultz.

During the next four years, these millennials hope whoever is elected will focus on a few key issues including unemployment and underemployment.

According to Inc.Magazine, about 37 percent of people 18-to-29 have been underemployed or unemployed during the recession. The highest among the age group in the last 30 years.

So it’s not a surprise that job creation is very important to this generation.

"There's just uncertainty in the economy, some losing pensions, rising health care costs, so the older folks are maintaining their jobs longer. While at the same time we're kicking out the younger generation who are trying to get jobs. And at this point, we're really flooding the job market," said Harris.

Another big issue is gun rights.

The most recent Pew Research survey said 49 percent of millennials favor gun control over protecting gun ownership.

"I'm all for gun rights. I have my CPL, I usually carry a firearm more times than not. You never know, walking out of here tonight, you're mugged or something. At knife-point, gunpoint, I think everybody should have that right to be able to defend themselves," said Harris.

"I actually completely agree with you. I definitely don't agree with a lot of the things the Democrats are doing regarding guns. The issue comes down to mental health. Having the proper protocol to screen somebody's mental health when they go to get a gun isn't going to completely fix the problem, but it's going to put some security there for some people. Make them feel a lot better," commented Corbin.

Something millennials agree on even more is LGBT community.

Approval of gay marriage stands at 71 percent for millennials, but Grayson Kennedy, a transgender man, said there’s still much more work to do.

"The bathrooms, oh my gosh. I still use the men's bathroom. I'm gonna say it, I do because I feel like I am a man and I go by Grayson because I am Grayson.”

But if there’s anything our panel hopes will happen in the next four years, it’s compromise.

"The biggest issue in the government is not creating jobs or gun control or anything like that. It comes down to parties not being able to work together, to compromise on issues of human importance. I mean national security is a huge issue, but the Democrats feel this way and the Republicans feel this way and there's no level ground," said Corbin.

"That used to be the way it was in the 60s, 70s, 80s and millennials are kind of breaking that barrier down. I know many of my friends that are Democrats and Republicans and even independents tend to be more willing to acknowledge the faults that their own party has," said Johnson.

"I absolutely agree with that. With Republicans, it's one of those things if I stray away from the party because I don't agree with something. All of a sudden I'm looked at different because I don't follow the party rules, I don't follow the party platform. And it goes into my voting, too. I am Republican, I work for the party, but if there's a Democrat candidate that I like that I feel is better than the Republican, I'll cross over and I'll vote for that individual. And I feel that's very important to do in today's time. Everybody needs to be able to study both sides of the platform," said Harris.  

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