With young Americans facing unprecedented levels of debt, unemployment and diminished career prospects, a new organization was launched today to reach, persuade, and mobilize young voters for change in the 2012 elections.
The new group, Crossroads Generation, is a joint venture of the College Republican National Committee, Young Republican National Federation, Republican State Leadership Committee and American Crossroads to win back young voters. As part of its launch, Crossroads Generation announced a $50,000 buy of online ads targeted to young swing voters in eight key states: CO, FL, IA, NC, NH, NV, OH, VA.
â€œCrossroads Generation aims to give a voice to a generation of Americans who are much worse off than they were four years ago,â€ said Derek Flowers, who serves as executive director of Crossroads Generation. â€œYoung voters are feeling the pain of President Obamaâ€™s failure to create jobs, and they know that more of the same policies wonâ€™t make them better off four or forty years from now.â€
Crossroad Generation is structured as an Independent Expenditure Committee commonly referred to as a â€œSuper PAC.â€ Start-up grants totaling $750,000 are being contributed by the CRNC, RSLC, and American Crossroads. Crossroads Generation will focus on building a major online presence for outreach and mobilization. This includes the launch of a new website and video (www.CrossroadsGeneration.com), Twitter feed (@CrossroadsGen), and Facebook presence (www.Facebook.com/CrossroadsGeneration) to engage young people online in a conversation about their future and the policies that impact them.
Crossroads Generation will also tap into the College Republican National Committeeâ€™s (CRNC) membership of more than 250,000 college students on over 1,800 campuses nationwide. The CRNC, which plans to send 60 full-time field staff to a dozen swing states this fall, adds an unparalleled grassroots army of young voters.
Derek Flowers, formerly National Victory Director of the Republican National Committee in 2010, will serve as the organizationâ€™s executive director. Kristen Soltis, a survey researcher with award-winning expertise on young voters and politics, will serve as communications advisor.
â€œYoung voters have the most to gain from real change in this election, and surveys show that these voters are truly up for grabs,â€ said Soltis. â€œTheir disappointment with Obama and the Democrats has opened the door to winning these voters back for Republicans in November and beyond.â€
Crossroad Generation intends to drive a simple message: young voters have been let down by Obama and the Democrats, and can choose a different path. To that point, young Americans continue to face double-digit unemployment, and students graduating today have worse career prospects than students graduating in the years before Obama took office. Longer-term, young Americans will be responsible for the trillions in new government debt created in the last three years.
â€œMany young voters who supported Obama in 2008 find themselves now facing a brutal economy, debt, and a need to move into their parent's basement to make ends meet,â€ continued Soltis. â€œBut this year, young voters can choose a different path. Itâ€™s critical for Republicans to have a conversation with young Americans about that alternative path, and that conversation starts today.â€