Clinton, Trump, or an apocalypse?
According to a new poll conducted by UMass Lowell’s Center for Public Opinion, one-in-four millennials would prefer death by a meteor than electing either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump to the Oval Office. The poll results come on the heels of the third and final presidential debate, which took place on Wednesday night, when both major-party candidates sought to woo voters still unsure about which candidate deserves their votes.
A major section of those undecided voters are millennials, who have not seen Clinton or Trump address issues that genuinely concern them during their respective campaigns. While Clinton’s camaraderie with Wall Street and big money — a contentious issue in the build-up to this election — is well-documented, Trump’s demagogic rise and the misogynistic and chest-thumping tone of his campaign has disillusioned young voters in more ways than one. It means that millennials, a demographic of American voters that does not see its ideals being represented in either of the major-party candidates, have been left with little option but to vote for a third-party candidate, write in a protest vote, or refrain from voting altogether.
With Clinton and Trump virtually tied in a number of polls nationally, these group of voters might well be the ones whose disapproval will come to hound the loser of the general election after November 8.
The poll results are also consistent with the fact that both Clinton and Trump suffer from the worst unfavorable ratings in modern American presidential history. But one would have thought that with the election less than three weeks away now, even voters not accepting of the major-party candidates would come around to voting for one of them. But, as the results of the latest poll show, that is certainly not the case, especially among millennials. Even death by a meteor, or complete annihilation of life from earth, is an idea more appealing to these voters than seeing Clinton or Trump become the next president of the United States of America.
Joshua Dyck, co-director of UMass Lowell’s group, said the idea behind including such a question in the polls was no joke. Dyck told Reuters that it shows the level of political dissatisfaction among America’s youth population has hit a record high.
“We do not take our respondents at their word that they are earnestly interested in seeing the world end, but we do take their willingness to rank two constitutional crises and a giant meteor ahead of these two candidates with startling frequency as a sign of displeasure and disaffection with the candidates and the 2016 election.”
Another 39 percent of the millennial voters who took part in the poll said that they would prefer current President Barack Obama to stay in power for life, while 26 percent millennials said that they would be fine with choosing the next president of the country in a random lottery.
Fifty-five percent of voters also said that they would prefer death by a meteor than a Trump presidency, while the numbers for Clinton for this particular question stood at nearly 34 percent.
The poll, as irreverent as it might appear to some, casts a sharp eye on how disillusioned millennial voters feel with the choice of candidates on offer. Many of the voters are still ruing the ousting of Vermont senator Bernie Sanders, who was a clear favorite when it came to support among millennials.
Michael Luciano, director of editorial innovation for Odyssey, the group which helped carry out the poll, told The Huffington Post that Trump’s atrocious support among millennials should be an alarming sight for Republican leaders.
“As the largest demographic in the country, millennials are going to play an increasingly bigger role in elections in the coming years. If Republicans want to be competitive in future presidential races, they need to reverse what they should consider a troubling trend among the millennial generation,” Luciano said.
The same could be said of the Democrats.
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