Hillary Clinton is clearly qualified to be president.
She has been a first lady, U.S. Senator and Secretary of State. She is also a Yale-educated lawyer who has deep knowledge of domestic and foreign policy.
But will her record and resume be enough in an election where many voters are seeking change?
Her opponent, Republican Donald Trump, is asking Americans to vote for him because he will “Make America great again,” a vague enough assertion that is left up to the voter to interpret. He has demonstrated a superficial knowledge of domestic and foreign policy.
But in the Republican primaries he defeated opponents with far more experience and knowledge of the issues.
Still, the contest between Clinton and Trump should not be this close. But it is.
Trump is gaining on Clinton in the national polls, including in the important battleground states.
Some Democrats are nervous, even though Clinton holds a clear advantage in the Electoral College.
Clinton is vulnerable, especially when it comes to young voters, which is why she was in Philadelphia September 19 to discuss her “Pennsylvania Millennials for Hillary” agenda.
The initiative was announced recently in an effort to reach millennials, those who fall between the ages of 18-34.
Clinton’s visit and her new initiative comes after the publication of a Sept. 6 New York Times story titled, “Young Blacks Voice Skepticism on Hillary Clinton, Worrying Democrats.”
The article stated, “Their skepticism is rooted in a deep discomfort with the political establishment that they believe the 68-year-old former first lady and secretary represents. They share a lingering mistrust of Mrs. Clinton and her husband over criminal justice issues. They are demanding more from politicians as part of a new, confrontational wave of Black activism that has arisen in response to police killings of unarmed African Americans.”
Clinton has a problem with young voters in general, not just Black young voters.
Her problem is not age. U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders had young voters supporting him even though he is 75 years old. It is not a matter of being in politics too long. Again, Sanders has held elective office since 1981. It is not gender. U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren is a favorite among young Democrats.
Clinton needs a better message and focus to reach young voters. In some cases it is not her message but emphasis. Earlier in the summer she sought to win over young voters with her proposal for debt-free college tuition. The Clinton campaign is currently placing emphasis on portraying Trump as racist and reckless. This does not appear to be enough.
The latest New York Times/CBS News poll showed that 36 percent of voters under 30 planned to vote for a third-party candidate such as Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party or Jill Stein of the Green Party.
In 2008, Barack Obama beat a more experienced Hillary Clinton in the primaries and Republican opponent Senator John McCain in the general election, partly because of a historically high turnout of voters age 18-25. Obama convinced American voters that he was going to transform politics with the campaign themes of hope and change.