Some Republicans seeking to “rebrand” the party are looking to Meghan McCain — daughter of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) — as a figure who can attract younger voters, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. A prolific blogger and Twitter contributor, McCain in a recent blog post described herself as a “pro-sex, ‘pro-life, pro-gay-marriage Republican,’” and some experts believe she could “be at the forefront of a new GOP breed: the ‘Meghan McCain Republican,’” the Chronicle reports. However, some Republicans have criticized McCain’s positions as departing too far from the party’s core principals, while other critics have attacked her as a political “lightweight.” McCain at times has attracted negative attention in the press and online.
According to the Chronicle, members of the so-called “millennial generation,” which includes U.S. residents born beginning in the early 1980s, voted for Barack Obama by a more than 2-to-1 ratio. Mike Hais, an author and fellow at NDN, a think tank formerly known as the New Democrat Network, said that the GOP can strengthen itself “to the extent that Meghan and others will find a way to appeal to Republicans by de-emphasizing the extremes on social issues.” This sector of the Republican Party includes younger voters who are interested in fiscal conservatism and less government involvement in people’s lives but also support environmental causes and civic engagement, the Chronicle reports. Adam Mendelsohn, a Republican strategist who was a spokesperson for Sen. McCain’s presidential campaign, said, “The party and its leadership has become totally out of touch with where voters under 30 are.’” He added that young voters “don’t see the world like a 65-year-old whose opinions were formulated during the Cold War … The Republican Party has to start actually talking about ideas and issues that resonate with these voters” (Marinucci, San Francisco Chronicle, 5/12).
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