The Republican Party is witnessing an unprecedented surge in support from young men. This trend, steadily growing over recent years, is now reaching record numbers, reshaping the political landscape and offering a significant boost to the GOP.
A study conducted by Monitoring the Future revealed 23% of 12th-grade boys identified as conservative in 2022. This is a significant increase from the 17% recorded in 1976.
Interestingly, this conservative identification among young men had been on a decline until recent years, when a new trend leaning towards the right emerged.
— New York Post (@nypost) September 8, 2023
This shift is not confined to surveys alone. In New York State, there has been a noticeable increase in the involvement of conservatives under 40, particularly men.
Peter Giunta, the chair of the New York State Young Republicans since 2021, has seen the number of chapters in the state grow from six to thirty during his tenure.
He attributes this growth to the energizing effect of Lee Zeldin’s gubernatorial campaign in 2022, which, despite not winning, sparked enthusiasm among young Republicans.
The stories of these young conservatives are as diverse as they are compelling. Take Daniel Idfresne, a sophomore at Syracuse University. He found his conservative footing after reading Jordan Peterson’s “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos.”
Then, there’s Kieran Laffey, a 17-year-old whose political awakening was triggered by the COVID lockdowns and their impact on his life. These young men, along with many others, are finding common ground in their shared conservative values.
@johnjparker12 Nice to read something positive this morning. CA to NY has to be tough for a conservative young man attending a liberal progressive school. Keep on standing for your beliefs, there's a later reward when we get to keep our country free!!https://t.co/rYrFTuTsdM
— Mike (@MichaelGibbs101) September 8, 2023
However, being a young conservative is not without its challenges.
John J. Parker, a senior at Syracuse University and chair of the school’s College Republicans chapter, speaks of the isolation and cultural hostility he faced on campus due to his conservative beliefs. Yet, despite these challenges, Parker remains steadfast in his convictions.
The rise of young conservatives is not just a trend but a movement. Elias Cunningham, a 15-year-old from Cornwall, NY, founded the Orange County chapter of Teen Republicans in 2022 and now chairs the group for the entire state.
His story is a testament to the growing influence of young conservatives in shaping the future of the Republican Party.
The surge in young men leaning right is a significant development for the GOP. It signals a new generation of conservatives ready to engage in political discourse and shape the future of America.