One of the main purposes of all the parties’ publicity juggernauts that will gain momentum in the next few weeks is to entice and engage the 18-25 year old voters. Turnout for this age bracket is often pretty dismal at the polls, but who can blame them? Just finding somewhere to live and somewhere to work is a Herculean feat, and the party leaders can spout all the soundbites in the world, but they just don’t seem to get it.
And whilst the party manifestos can seem a little wishy-washy, by voting, we have the chance to affect how Britain – how we – progress in the forthcoming years. If you’re an 18 to 25 year old now, the incoming government will preside over some pretty important years in your life. So here are three things that are worth having a look at before you make your decision on 7 May.
1. Vote for Policies
Who doesn’t love a good online quiz? In an increasingly Buzzfeedified world, this is a useful way to work out what you really think about how the country should be run, aside from judging by the personalities on the podiums. It’s a smidgen long-winded, but justifiably so, this quiz condenses all the main party policies into simple, digestible statements which you choose blind, based on what makes sense to you most. The results are often surprising, and you can see how the rest of the country are faring too. Worth half an hour: https://voteforpolicies.org.uk/
2. None of the Above
Yep, Rick Edwards, him off misspent weekend mornings watching T4, has written a book about why young people aren’t voting, and why they should. He’s been involved with BBC Three ‘Junior Question Time’ type programmes for a few years, and he also writes for The Observer, Evening Standard and Huffington Post. He also graduated from Cambridge, so probably a bit wasted on T4, all in all. Anyway, it’s a great guide book to the complex, historical world of policy and a bit of an education regardless of how much you already know.
3. The TV debates
Because like it or not, how the leaders communicate, on camera and to each other, matters. After all, whoever wins this election will need to command the attention of some pretty heavy guns (literally) around the world. The TV debates in 2010 gave us a chance to see politics in action, pitting the wits, the policies and the charisma of the leaders against each other in a pretty high-stakes environment. Already it’s causing controversy, with David Cameron only committing to one – it’s all to play for.