Millennials are much more open to socialism


Millennials are just starting to be elected to Congress, but they could one day make up the largest generational group there, bringing a distinctly Millennial approach to policy and governing. And that might include Democratic socialism.

Case in point: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the 28-year-old Democratic socialist who won her primary in New York Tuesday in an upset over a 10-term incumbent.
More than any other generation before them, Millennial’s are OK with socialism. A 2016 Gallup poll found 55% of those then aged 18-29 said they had a positive view of it (it’s worth noting 57% supported capitalism and 78% supported free enterprise). Compare that with those 65 and older, only 24% of whom had a positive view of socialism. Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign was instrumental in mainstreaming Democratic socialism, but Millennials’ economic situation also plays a role.
At a time of growing economic inequality, Millennials are especially falling behind. A recent studyby the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis found Millennials born in the ’80s have a net worth 34% below what was expected. And student debt since 2009 has doubled to $1.4 trillion, contributing to a decline in home ownership among young people, per a Federal Reserve Bank of New York study.
For many cash-strapped Millennials in debt, Democratic socialism isn’t radical, it’s a way to fix a system they believe failed them. And Democratic Socialists of America, an organization Ocasio-Cortez is a member of, lists among its goals things like decreasing the influence of money in politics, and empowering people in the workplace and economy, issues with broad support.