Young people who still ‘feel the Bern’

Paulina Enck writes at the Federalist about younger voters’ continuing fascination with avowed socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders.

[I]n light of his insane policies, poor performances in many debates, and failure to clinch the nomination four years ago, it makes one wonder why young people are such huge Bernie fans.

The obvious appeal of free stuff is a huge factor . He is promising “free” health care and education, cheaper housing and taxpayers taking on most people’s debt, with no clear indication of a price tag. What many are ignoring is that nothing is truly free, and all of these “free” services will be paid for in taxes. Bernie will not be around by the time his policies will have to be paid for, but his youthful supporters definitely will. If governmet, and thereby the taxpayers, pays for people’s basic expenses, eventually these young people who are excited to be on the receiving end of the free government services will be paying in taxes not just for their own but also for those of other blissfully unaware youths.

Another aspect of Bernie’s popularity is his apparent genuineness. Many candidates, particularly Sen. Elizabeth Warren, have spent their campaigns facing a serious authenticity problem. This is not a problem for Bernie. Love him or hate him, he comes across as if he fully believes every insane word that comes out of his mouth. In a field of overly polished, pre-rehearsed politicians, Bernie stands out as crazy but real.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...

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