PLP targeting young voters
The Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) is planning to focus a large amount of its campaign effort on attracting the electorate between the ages of 18 and 40, the party’s Member of Parliament for Fox Hill Fred Mitchell said yesterday.
Mitchell, speaking at the announcement of a PLP conclave in eastern New Providence scheduled to take place in two weeks, said the voting public under 40 represents at least 40 percent of the electorate in his own constituency, and he contended that contemporary methods of reaching those groups will be utilized by the party.
“We have always had an integrated focus but you always have to respond to what the market demands,” he said.
“Social networking for example exists this time, which didn’t exist five years ago, so we have to respond to those marketing demands and so to that extent, yes it is a different focus because there is a different way of reaching people.”
He continued, “There is a different view of life than there was five years ago and the PLP is relevant to the times and wants to demonstrate that it is in touch with the people of the country.”
All but three of the sitting PLP members of Parliament have Facebook pages that they use to interact with the public online. Similarly, many Free National Movement members of Parliament use Facebook to relate to the younger generation, who are the primary users of the social networking site.
Mitchell referred to the persons in the under forty group, who would likely use forms of social media as “key elements in the campaign.”
He insisted that bringing the PLP’s message to the masses through contemporary media, and presenting the present and historical context of the PLP, will help the party to capture the next general election.
“When young people examine the contributions of the PLP we are certain that they will come to the conclusion that this is the best party to lead the Commonwealth of The Bahamas from the general election onward,” Mitchell said.
The conclave, which is to be held at the New Life Christian Centre on Prince Charles Drive from Thursday, July 21st to Saturday, July 23rd, will feature one day in which the Progressive Young Liberals – the youth arm of the party – will present their ideas and views.
Mitchell said that many of the first time voters registered to cast their ballots in the next election will probably vote for their parents’ party.
However, he said the power of the groups that young people are a part of also cannot be discounted as a deciding factor.
“People look at whether they are better off today than four years ago,” Mitchell said. “Our focus then is to make sure that the voter is forewarned and well armed with information about the PLP.”