What Republican Candidate Is The Best Bet for Millennials?
Even though I’d rather clean Fred Armisen’s apartment in my underwear for four years than live in a country where one of the Republican candidates takes over the White House, it could happen. Donald Trump could bring his racist xenophobic views to the White House. Ted Cruz could bring his stash of bodies from his Zodiac murder spree and Evangelical zeal to the White House. As heartbreaking as it is, there’s no use pretending that John Kasich could overcome his one-state win– he’s Michelle Williams. I can’t just laugh off Cruz and Trump anymore, because mistakes in the political process do happen—we had George Bush struggle to talk coherently as our country’s leader for eight years. The time has come to plunge into the icy cold reality of picking which of these two men is best for me and the rest of my millennial generation.
The question is, what do millennials care about? According to a study by Rock the Vote, we care the most about the economy, education, and the environment. With this in mind, I put on my unused Sexy Miner outfit from two Halloweens ago and dug through the policy positions of Trump and Cruz so you don’t have to. Without further ado, here’s everything you need to know about which Republican is the best bet for millennials this year.
Who Isn’t Going to Ruin the Economy for Your Underemployed Ass?
I tried to look at each candidate’s economic plan raw, but it was too painful and confusing. To help lube myself up for my first real look at mathematics since receiving a B in Fundamental College Algebra years ago, I needed some help. I figured out the average median income for millennials ($25K nationally), plugged it into a tax calculator, and realized that the Trump and Cruz tax plans would somehow save us thousands. Trump’s plan would save a millennial making the average income a total of $2090, while Cruz would save them $1,500 thanks to big tax breaks.
The catch is, the two candidates don’t explain how they’d pay for the huge tax cuts they’ve proposed. According to the wisdom of Ezra Klein, Cruz and Trump would have to cut all education spending, including Pell grants, the entire Department of Education, K-12 funds, and more. They’d also have to cut the FBI, DEA, most of the Department of Justice, all international embassies, close the State Department, and then take a break for lunch, because that still wouldn’t pay for the tax cuts. They’d also have to get rid of the Coast Guard, TSA, FAA, and Department of Veteran Affairs. At this point, Cruz could maybe implement his $8.6 trillion spending cut, but for Trump, his $9.5 trillion tax cut is still out of reach. It probably would stay out of reach too, unless he completely eliminates 90% of the federal government.
Oh and if you’re wondering about jobs, keep wondering. Trump doesn’t want to raise the minimum wage because “it’s not a bad thing for this country.” Cruz doesn’t want to raise the minimum wage and has actually voted against raising it. They claim to be the best for job creating, but we’re still waiting to hear a solid plan for how they’ll create jobs.
Winner: Trump wins in theory because he’d save you the most money. You’d just be stuck using that $2090 tax return to try and survive in a country that has no social programs to help out people like us who are making, on average, $25K nationally.
What Candidate Cares About Your Student Loan Payments?
If you thought that Cruz paying off $100K in student loans would make him somehow develop a conscious and tackle the trillion-dollar student loan crisis that affects more than 40 million Americans, you wrongfully assume his positions are consistent. He may have voted in favor of a bipartisan bill in 2013 that capped student loan interest rates and fixed them for the life of the loan, but he also vetoed Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s Student Emergency Loan Refinancing Act. That bill would’ve allowed more than 25 million Americans to refinance their student loans at lower interest rates.
Trump hasn’t ever held political office, so his voting record on this kinds of legislation literally doesn’t exist, but he does seem to have some sense of compassion for students. “That’s probably one of the only things the government shouldn’t make money off—I think it’s terrible that one of the only profit centers we have is student loans,” he said back in July.
Winner: Nobody, because neither of the candidates have offered any plan for how to stop the student loan crisis, or even suggesting how to make college more affordable so we don’t have to sell our souls to get a degree. Their kindness or experience with student loans means nothing if they don’t take action. It’s also worth reiterating that both candidates refuse to support raising the minimum wage, which would help people earn a livable wage while they are struggling to find a job that suits their major.
Which Republican Actually Believes in Climate Change?
Alright alright, so maybe Cruz and Trump aren’t so great for millennials in terms of the economy or student loans. At least they care about saving the Earth, right? You may want to sit down. Trump was convinced that climate change was a hoax created by the Chinese before he ran for president, and ever since he started his campaign, his position has swayed like my frail body in a windstorm. “I know much about climate change. I’d be—received environmental awards,” he actually said in January. Then earlier this month, he made this confusing statement to The Washington Post: “I’m not a big believer in man-made climate change. I think our biggest form of climate change we should worry about is nuclear weapons.” So, there’s that. Nuclear weapons are a form of climate change.
If that wasn’t painful enough to read, I welcome you to the Wild World of Science Isn’t Real and Stuff that Cruz lives in. “Climate change is not science. It’s religion,” he told the equally crazy Glenn Beck in October. He is a staunch climate denier and, while he doesn’t call it a Chinese conspiracy, he still completely disregards and distorts facts. From satellites tracking warming for 18 years to global cooling, he refuses to accept what 97% of peer-reviewed studies have concluded: climate change is real and a world crisis.
Winner: Cockroaches. These little shitty creatures are the only things that would survive a Republican presidency if Trump or Cruz win, because they’re equipped to survive climate change and nuclear war. If you’re a millennial and hoping to find a presidential candidate that has your back, it’s time to look elsewhere. If the student loan and economic policies weren’t enough, their total disregard for global warming is confirmation that we’d probably enter a literal living hell if we vote them into the White House. Even our millennial chill vibes aren’t enough to combat the rising temperatures we’d have to endure.
Original gifs by Kathryn Chadason. Additional via Tumblr.