Bush does better with college students

The Associated Press
10/22/2003, 12:02 p.m. ET

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Bush has more support among college students than the general public, according to a new poll that also says students have lost trust in Bush over the last year.

The poll done for the Harvard University Institute of Politics found that 61 percent of college students approve of the job done by Bush — about 10 points higher than the president's approval rating in several recent polls of the general population.

But the students indicated they also have concerns about the president's policies, with 86 percent saying the Bush administration has been hiding something or not telling the truth about Iraq.

Seven in 10 students said they think it will be difficult finding a job when they graduate.

The poll found two-thirds of college students say political involvement can show real benefits, 17 points higher than the number who said that in 2000.

Institute Director Dan Glickman, agriculture secretary under President Clinton, said political candidates should pay attention to this potential source of support in addition to their traditional courtship of senior citizens.

"This is a large resource of several million potential voters who should not be ignored," Glickman said.

The poll of 1,202 college students nationwide was taken Oct. 3-12 and it has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

This astounds even me. Some 9 out of 10 university profs nationwide are registered as Democrats or members of other liberal parties. Students in PolySci classes around the country are subjected to tirades against George W. And yet, somehow, still more than 60% think he is doing a good job. This just reinforces what a survey conducted by UC Berkeley found last year, the today's youth are more conservative than their parents.

The next step though, is to transfer this to any sort of political success. Though these students may hold conservative beliefs, THEY STILL FAIL TO SHOW IT WHERE IT COUNTS. Politicians and campaigns continue to ignore students and issues which may be of interest and concern to them. However, if even in a small way, a campaign decided to seriously address higher education, or social security reform, or consumer credit, they might find a great source of new support. I doubt whether it'll happen any time soon, but it'd sure be fun to see if it did.


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