The youth vote may be Justin Trudeau’s X-factor in this year’s election.
The youth vote turned Barack Obama from an unknown senator into the president of the United States. Justin Trudeau is looking to follow in those footsteps.
“I think everyone wins if young people get out to vote,” Trudeau told the Toronto Observer. “My primary concern is getting them out. If I convince them to vote for me that’s great, but I think the win is rising youth turnout.”
Candidate Justin Trudeau tried to channel his father and appeal to young voters Monday night. He held a Q and A with Vice Media at the Great Hall on Queen Street West in Toronto.
This was only hours after Trudeau released the Liberal’s official platform over Facebook. They claim to be the first political party in the world to do this. These are some of the initiatives taken to get young people engaged.
One of these first-timers was Mustafa Sayadi, a Munk School of Global Affairs student who had never attended a political event before but has been following Trudeau’s campaign.
“It really contrasts the huge rallies you see on TV with all the political signage,” Sayadi said. “It’s like watching a TV talk show. Having him converse with us is going to be interesting.”
Damien Abraham, Toronto punk musician and host of the Vice series Canadian Cannabis, questioned Trudeau regarding his plans to liberate pot smokers.
Trudeau said he plans to legalize pot at the federal level and work together with provinces to create an above board system of regulation.
Other topics included the cost of post-secondary education, support for transsexual health and the environment. Trudeau’s ideals seemed to resonate and he was applauded for much of what he said.
Marginalization of Aboriginal Canadians received a lot of attention. Polls conducted by Vice show young people thought this was the most overlooked issue during the election. Trudeau promises to honour the Kelowna Accord agreement and bring clean drinking water to all First Nations reserves within five years.