As expected, college affordability was a primary talking point at the meeting of the Youth Council Wednesday, though health care policies took center stage in council discussions, said Charlotte resident and council meeting attendee Brendan Carol.
Members of the Youth Council and audience members reflected on the state of the youth vote and briefly outlined goals for the last leg of the presidential campaign, including efforts to mobilize the base and register new voters. Four outside speakers were in attendance including second lady Jill Biden and former New Jersey Secretary of State Regena Thomas.
Biden spoke briefly—for three minutes—and restricted her remarks to increasing voter turnout, skimming over key youth-oriented topics such as student loan policy and the DREAM Act. Carol said.
“She basically just said, come out and help my husband and his boss,” he said.
Biden noted the Bidens’ and Obamas’ ability to identify with students—the couples at one time held student loans of their own—as a strength of the Democratic ticket.
“All this energy you have here today, it can’t just stay in this room, it can’t just stay at the convention,” Biden concluded. “You’ve got to be out there, and you’ve got to be working your networks, recruiting new volunteers, getting out the vote and getting people energized.”
Carol added that in contrast, Regena Thomas’ remarks had the room on its feet for nearly the duration of her speech. Thomas’ passion was contagious.
“[Thomas] came out with, ‘You fired up? You ready?’” he said. “She did her job fantastically—she really motivated the crowd.”