Simone Archer-Krauss ’19 on Harnessing the Power of Young Voters in Elections
Today is primary day in New Hampshire.
After months of debates, town halls, and news articles scrutinizing each candidate, New Hampshire residents will be the second state in the nation to determine their choice for the Democratic presidential nominee in the 2020 elections.
For Simone Archer-Krauss ’19 and her team at NextGen America, a voter advocacy organization, today isn’t about the candidates—it’s about the power of young people to shape the future.
In the weeks leading up to the New Hampshire primary, Archer-Krauss has done everything from ordering pens and paper for canvassing events to organizing rides for college-age voters. The goal? Engage, educate, and empower young voters, making it as easy as possible for them to get to the polls and speak out on issues they care about the most at the ballot box. The organization estimates they have knocked on over 12,000 doors, and pledged almost 10,000 young people to vote in the presidential primary.
She also wants to make sure young people understand why they should exercise their right to vote: “We are the largest voting bloc in the country...We have the power to decide elections if we turned out at the rate of people over 65 years old.”
Archer-Krauss took a few hours off from overseeing NextGen’s statewide voter participation effort to join volunteers to canvass the neighborhoods of Manchester. Between knocking on doors and dodging snow flurries, she explained the impact of grassroots advocacy work on voter turnout and what she’s learned about herself, and the power of young people, by talking to strangers.