It’s time to talk about the comb-over in the room. My apologies to those of you seeking respite from its chick-fluff colored glow. But at this point, it just seems irresponsible of me to put it off any longer.


Millennials do not like Donald Trump.


To be fair, I should say the majority of American Millennials do not like Donald Trump. But polls and surveys have shown that it’s a pretty strong majority, so grant me this generalization for the moment, if you will.


As I have mentioned in previous Millennial Pulses, Trump lost out with my generation in the election. Clinton won 55% of the Millennial vote, while Trump won 37% and alternative candidates the remainder, according to the Brookings Institute.


His Millennial problem is not improving and, in some areas, is worse off. Harvard Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics (IOP) Spring Poll found that just 32% of 18- to 29-year-old Americans approve of the president’s overall job performance. The poll surveyed 2,654 Americans in that age group with a margin of error of +/– 2.7 percentage points.


The Harvard IOP poll also found that “young Americans’ approval of President Trump’s handling of the economy is at 37%.” And “Furthermore on other issues, the poll finds his approval of dealing with ISIS at 33%, health care at 30%, climate change at 28% and performance on race relations at 27%.”


A Pew Research Center poll released on April 17 found that only 30% of Millennials ages 18 to 29 approve of how Trump is handling his job as president, while 63% disapprove and 7% said they did not know or refused to answer. The poll included 1,501 people of various ages, educational backgrounds, income levels and ethnicities.


There are disparities between how Millennial minorities view Trump’s presidency versus the perspectives of white Millennials.


Pew broke out responses from white Millennial respondents and found a softer divide, with 42% approving of his performance and 51% disapproving.


GenForward, a survey of ethnically diverse young adults developed by the University of Chicago’s Black Youth Project and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, recently released its April 14 to May 1 results. The survey included interviews with 528 African-Americans, 262 Asian-Americans, 518 Latinos, 504 whites, and 41 young adults from other ethnic or racial backgrounds.


The majority of each subgroup surveyed said they disapproved of Trump as president. Forty-seven percent of whites fell into this category. More dramatically, 78% of African-Americans, 70% of Asian-Americans and 71% of Latinos said they disapproved of Trump.


Similar trends are shown in the Pew poll as well. Should we be surprised?


It’s not too hard to connect the dots here. Trump ran on a platform – and is now operating on a platform – that is in some significant respects anti-immigration. He wants to build a “big, fat, beautiful wall” (as stated in July 2016) to keep illegal immigrants out. He has twice instituted travel bans on mostly Muslim-majority countries. And he did all this at a time when the country’s young adult population consists of the most diverse generation the country has ever seen, according to U.S. Census data.


Say what you want about Trump’s reasoning – I am not going to take that debate up. But consider the optics. If you were (or are) a minority and you have family members that are immigrants or perhaps even refugees, would you be more or less inclined to like the guy?


And then there’s his Cabinet. It is strikingly majority white. If you weren’t (or aren’t) white, would you feel represented at the highest levels of government? Would you think this administration felt it was important to ensure your point of view was represented?


It’s comparable to how I feel about the number of women on his Cabinet: underrepresented and, frankly, kind of ticked. Then to put salt in the wound along came Canada’s Justin Trudeau, who instituted a half-female Cabinet. Like any true American patriot, I do not enjoy our country coming off as less hip with the times than Canada.


Overall, one could easily take in the poll numbers and assume that Millennials don’t like President Trump’s performance because they don’t like what he stands for. But that’s not the big picture.


Harvard IOP’s poll found that 60% of Millennials believe Trump’s plans to crack down on unfair trade practices that “hurt American workers” will, in fact, “make America better.” (Wait, was that the phrase on the hat?)


Two-to-one, Millennials believe empowering law enforcement and putting an end to “the anti-police atmosphere” in the country will, again, Make America Better.


Millennials even agree with him on the media. Harvard IOP found that only 10% of Millennials would give mainstream media an A grade for coverage of the president’s first 100 days.


So if some of his policies and perspectives play well, why don’t so many young people like him?


I believe the problem with Trump and Millennials is not as much about his politics as some folks would assume. It’s Trump, the man. Trump, the guy who said things on the campaign trail that made the phrase “politically correct” wither up and die.


It’s Trump, the guy whose remarks about women undoubtedly helped fuel the potent mixture of outrage and solidarity that sparked the recent Women’s March.


It’s Trump, whose press secretary says one thing only to be contradicted by his boss in an off-the-cuff tweet in the middle of the night or in a frank interview with NBC’s Lester Holt, who undoubtedly feels like he just won the lottery.


Just look at the Republican politicians like John McCain who regularly question Trump. They typically don’t have a problem with his policies. They have a problem with his behavior.

And just like Trump’s party, our generation has to accept the fact that he plain just doesn’t care.


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