Poll: Economic Policies Not Helpful for Young Adults in Michigan

Oct 31, 2012, 12:51 ET from Generation Opportunity

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Only 22 Percent of Michigan's Young Adults Say Economic Policies from Washington, D.C. Help Them; 78 Percent Plan to Vote in 2012 Presidential Election

WASHINGTON, Oct. 31, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Generation Opportunity today released results from their comprehensive Michigan-specific survey of young adults ages 18-29 (Millennial voters). The poll found that 78 percent of young Michiganders plan to vote in the presidential election; only 22 percent think economic policies coming from Washington, D.C., are helping them; only 34 percent are satisfied with elected officials in Washington; and that 76 percent believe key life decisions have been delayed by the poor national economy. The poll also revealed that, in the opinion of young Michiganders, of the "Get Out the Vote" (GOTV) reminder tools that will have an impact on young voter turnout in Michigan, Facebook ranked first at 60 percent and text messages ranked second at 45 percent. Only 11 percent of Michigan's Millennials thought a phone call would be effective – a clear indication that smartphones and other mobile devices have reached a point of heavy market penetration within the demographic.

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Generation Opportunity, with over 4 million fans on Facebook and direct grassroots engagement with over a quarter million young Americans, has over 100,000 followers across the state of Michigan. In addition to the poll results, Generation Opportunity has launched the Pledge to GO Vote Campaign aimed at further increasing the already growing enthusiasm and interest among young adults to participate in the presidential election. Generation Opportunity is encouraging its supporters, their friends, and all those within their networks to Pledge to GO Vote. Read more about the initiative and sign the pledge here at GenerationOpportunity.org/vote.

Watch the video at bit.ly/PledgeToGOVote.


  • 78% of Michigan Millennials plan to vote in the election for President this year.
  • Only 34% believe that today's political leaders reflect the interests of young Americans.
  • 59% say the most important thing in casting a vote for President in 2012 will be a candidate's positions on issues and record in office.
    • 59% - A candidate's position on issues and a record in public office;
    • 5% - A candidate's personal characteristics, like charisma and likeability;
    • 26% - They are of equal importance (accepted only this response);
    • 4% - Neither is important / something else;
    • 7% - Do not know/cannot judge (accepted only this response).
  • At 60%, a clear majority of 18-29 year old Michiganders say Facebook reminder messages are the most effective tools to make young people more likely to vote? (Accepted multiple responses) (Randomized).
    • 60% - Facebook reminder message;
    • 45% - Text message reminder;
    • 29% - Email reminder;
    • 23% - Public service announcement;
    • 11% - Phone call;
    • 16% - None of the above (accepted only this response);
    • 9% - Do not know/cannot judge (accepted only this response).


  • Only 28% of Michigan Millennials agree with the statement "generally speaking, things in the United States are heading in the right direction."
  • 57% are not confident that America will still be a global leader in five years if the USA continues along the same path as the last few years.


  • 75% of Michigan Millennials believe that the lack of job opportunities is shrinking the American middle class.
  • Only 22% say that the economic policies coming out of Washington are helping them.
  • 76% had planned to but now might delay or not make at all a major life change or move forward on a major purchase due to the current state of the economy (Accepted multiple responses) (Randomized):
    • 39% - Buy their own place;
    • 28% - Pay off student loans or other debt;
    • 28% - Save for retirement;
    • 26% - Start a family;
    • 23% - Go back to school/getting more education or training;
    • 20% - Get married;
    • 19% - Change jobs/cities;
    • 20% - None of the above (accepted only this response);
    • 4% - Do not know/cannot judge (accepted only this response).


  • 64% of Michigan Millennials believe the availability of more quality, full-time jobs upon graduation is more important than lower student loan interest rates.
  • 60% say the availability of more quality, full-time jobs with health insurance plans is more important than the ability to stay on their parents' health insurance plans until they are 26.
  • 65% would increase production of domestic American energy sources like oil, natural gas, and coal if given the opportunity to set America's fiscal priorities.
  • 77% would decrease federal spending if given the opportunity to set America's fiscal priorities.
  • 70% prefer reducing federal spending over raising taxes on individuals to balance the budget.


"As Election Day approaches, young Michiganders are growing more and more weary of the heavy price they are paying personally for the failed policies of the President over the last three and a half years through record unemployment and diminished hope in finding quality job opportunities. The sad reality for far too many across this great state, for young Michiganders trying to build a life for themselves and their families, is that their plans have been put on hold through no fault of their own. The status quo is now fewer job opportunities, a greater struggle to make ends meet, and growing concern over how to reach even the modest hopes and dreams of homeownership and a debt free future for themselves and their families," said Amber S. Roseboom, Executive Vice President of Generation Opportunity and former Deputy Chief of Staff for United States Office of Personnel Management.

"Young Michiganders grew up with stories from their parents and grandparents about the heyday of the Motor City and the boon felt across the state in many industries; but despite the shiny rhetoric coming from the President and his appointees, today they see more and more empty storefronts and broken dreams. They are being told this is just a 'changing' economy and to expect less from themselves and their leaders – but they know we can do better! Michiganders are determined to take back their futures and lead this nation in this century. They know the path to the future is paved with their hard work and ingenuity, not temporary government fixes – they simply want the government to get out of the way, and they intend to make their voices heard next Tuesday at voting locations across the state."

Roseboom, a Michigan native, is a graduate of Michigan State University's James Madison College and has a deep background in Michigan public policy.


For Generation Opportunity, the polling company, inc./WomanTrend, conducted a statewide online survey of 507 Michigan adults ages 18-29 between July 27August 16, 2012. Randomly selected online opt-in panel participants were sent an invitation to the survey via email, which included a secure link to the online questionnaire. Quotas were used to ensure the survey was representative of the larger 18-29 year old statewide population with regard to race, region, and gender. The data were NOT weighted. The overall sampling margin of error for the survey is ±4.4% at a 95% confidence interval, meaning that the data obtained would not differ more than 4.4 percentage points in 95 out of 100 similar samples obtained.


Generation Opportunity is the largest non-profit, non-partisan organization in the United States engaging and mobilizing young Americans (ages 18-29) on important economic issues facing the nation. Since its launch in June of 2011, Generation Opportunity has operated on a combined strategy of advanced social media tactics and field tactics to reach young Americans across the country.

Generation Opportunity is actively organizing young adults across America through grassroots tactics, voter registration, and voter turnout efforts in states like Ohio, Virginia, Maine, North Carolina, Michigan, and Florida, engaging over a quarter million young adults. The organization's social media platforms have amassed a total fan base of more than 4 million. Facebook pages post links to relevant articles and reports from sources ranging from the federal Government Accountability Office (GAO), to The New York TimesThe Washington Post, The Brookings Institution, The Wall Street JournalThe Huffington Post, and The Heritage Foundation.

Read about Generation Opportunity here; visit "Being American by GO" on Facebook here, "The Constitution by GO" on Facebook here,  "Gas Prices Are Too Damn High" on Facebook here"Lower Taxes by GO" on Facebook here"Keep Texas Awesome" on Facebook here"Jersey Proud" on Facebook here, and "We Like Small Government" on Facebook here.

For our Spanish-language page – Generación Oportunidad – click here.

Follow us on Twitter @GenOpportunity.

Matthew Faraci – 202-997-1636 | EMAIL
David Pasch – 202-230-7947 | EMAIL

SOURCE Generation Opportunity