Many within the GOP recognize a need for the party to attract not only younger voters, but younger elected representatives. The perception that Republicans are primarily older Americans is an issue that has plagued party leaders for years.
If West Virginia teen Saira Blair is any indication, though, the future could be very bright for up-and-coming conservative candidates. At just 17 years old, politicians rarely come any younger than the upbeat young woman who just successfully beat incumbent state Delegate Larry Klump in her state’s recent primary election.
A successful campaign in the general election would make her West Virginia’s youngest legislator ever.
It is not just her age that sets her apart from other prospective representatives across America. Not only did she promise to keep her campaign completely positive; her basic platform outlines the issues she supports – pro-life, pro-gun, pro-family, pro-business, pro-jobs – rather than focusing on what she opposes.
Furthermore, her level of accessibility during the race was virtually unparalleled. She gave voters her personal cell phone number in an effort to answer any questions they might have about her or her candidacy.
That refreshing outlook led to a close race but a definitive victory for the teenaged challenger. Though the prospect of replacing an incumbent is daunting at any age, Blair said she feels she is up to the task.
“I think I’m fully capable of doing the job, and I don’t think it’s rocket science by any means,” she concluded, emphasizing the importance of hearing the concerns of her constituents.
“There are two types of politicians – those that think they know everything and those who want to listen to the people and do what they feel,” she added, explaining she is determined to fall into the second category.
While incumbents have the benefit of campaign experience and, in many cases, established donors and party support, Blair proved that a fresh face and a new perspective can often be enough to overcome substantial odds.
Photo Credit: Facebook/Saira Blair
This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom