Young people want our democracy to change



November 27, 2018 - 9:13 AM

Elected officials headed to Capitol Hill and statehouses can learn plenty from the students I recently was privileged to speak with on four college campuses. So can candidates already considering 2020.

Many of our democratic norms seem to be in question, if not under assault, but there’s good news about young people and democracy. They are interested in practicing civility in politics, protecting equal rights, ensuring the campaign finance system works for individuals, expanding civic education and making voting easier. And, yes, engaging with other students, even recruiting some to run for office.

The conversations at the University of Pennsylvania, Florida International, Arizona State and Southern Methodist University grew out of The Democracy Project, a public research study by Freedom House, the George W. Bush Institute and the Penn Biden Center. The survey explores Americans’ views on our democracy’s health.

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