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Millennials, Gen Z could be game changers in midterm polls, says analyst

Millennials and the even younger Generation Z could be game changers in this year's midterm polls as they seem to have different views from their elders, a political analyst said Monday.

Over 61 million registered voters are expected to exercise their right to suffrage on Monday, with a total of 43,554 candidates vying for 18,071 positions.

According to data from the Commission on Elections (Comelec), voters aged 18 to 29 make up 31% of the total voting population, while those aged 30 to 44 make up 32%.

Millennials are broadly defined by American think tank Pew Research Center as those aged 23 to 38, while Generation Z is said to cover those aged 7 to 22.

"Kung mataas ang turnout ngayon ng kabataan, baka may magbago doon sa turnout ng elections natin," Ela Atienza, chairperson of the Department of Political Science of the University of the Philippines, said in an interview on GMA's "Eleksyon 2019" coverage.

"Doon sa karanasan namin, sa mga estudyante, iba talaga ang gusto nila kumpara sa gusto ng kanilang mga magulang," she explained.

This comes as results of surveys conducted by agencies such as the Social Weather Stations (SWS) and Pulse Asia yielded different results from those conducted by tertiary schools and universities across the country.

"Nitong mga mock elections, parang iba ang gusto nila doon sa mga lumalabas sa surveys," said Atienza.

Atienza noted, however, that this would still depend on the voter turnout on Monday, as not all youth are involved in politics.

"Parang makikita rin natin na may grupo ng kabataan na interesado ulit sa politika, kasali sa organized politics, pero hindi natin masabi na sa kahalaatan, hindi lahat ay interesedo sa politika," she said.

Atienza urged all registered voters, especially the youth, to cast their votes on Monday.

"Kinakailangang free, fair, transparent, and competitive 'yung eleksyon... Karapatan nila at responsibilidad nilang bumoto," she said. — BM, GMA News