Why did younger voters back Corbyn’s Labour in the General Election?

Jeremy Corbyn
Jeremy Corbyn

The youth vote has been cited as a major factor in the surge in popularity for Labour and its leader Jeremy Corbyn at the ballot box.

A reliable breakdown of voting data will not be available until later this week, but political commentators suggest the Labour vote was boosted by a rise in voters from the 18-24 group.

The new Parliamentary political map of Derbyshire.

The new Parliamentary political map of Derbyshire.

They say Mr Corbyn successfully connected with the internet-obsessed ‘grime’ generation after being endorsed by popular rapper Stormzy.

During the campaign, the Labour leader also held a number of rallies to mobilise young voters and used videos and social media to raise his profile.

Jamie Macarthur, 18, is an A-Level business, sociology and law student at Chesterfield College who wants to work in politics.

He said Labour’s campaign ‘made you believe they were a party for the people’.

He said “I have always aligned to the Conservatives but I didn’t vote for Theresa May this time.

“I changed my mind mainly because of her policy on the ‘dementia tax’ and a range of other policies in her manifesto that I disagree with.

“I think she took her core voters for granted and ignored their interests in a lot of what is in her manifesto and that is why we are in the position we are in.

“The biggest concern for me in the future is that I should get out of the system what I put in and that I should have assets to show for my hard work.

“I can’t see how I or my parents would have that under the plans outlined in Theresa May’s manifesto.

“Labour’s policies were much more popular with students and young people. Their election campaign really made you believe they were a party for the people.

“For my immediate future, I know I would benefit from their plans to scrap tuition fees, increase the minimum wage and get rid of zero hour contracts.

“I think they would have changed Brexit negotiations too if they’d have had the majority.

“Many more of my peers seemed to be much more interested in the election this time because of what is at stake for them.

“They were desperate for some certainty so they wanted to make their voices heard.”