Housing biggest headache for youngsters, Timmermans for PM

Conceptual visualization of doubt when voting for elections

The most important issues for people aged 18 and 34 in the upcoming elections are housing, cost of living and rising prices, an online survey by Ipsos among 2001 voters for broadcaster NOS has shown.

Climate comes third in the list but unlike in the 2021, it no longer appears in the top 10 of issues that determine how people will vote. “Not all parties are being very vocal about the problem and that means it doesn’t translate into votes,” Ipsos researcher Sander Nieuwkerk said.

Money worries play a bigger role in younger people’s voting intentions, Nieuwkerk said, with students hard put to find affordable accommodation and people who have been able to buy a house being faced with high electricity bills.

Ipsos also asked respondents who they would like to see as prime minister. The over-35s said they would like NSC’s Pieter Omtzigt occupy the prime minister’s office while younger voters preferred Frans Timmermans, leader of the GroenLinks PvdA alliance.

VVD leader Dilan Yesilgöz comes second across the generations and right-wing PVV leader Geert Wilders comes third. He is also the best-known politician among youngsters.

The preference for Timmermans over Omzigt among the younger voters comes as a bit of a surprise, political scientist Roderik Rekker told NOS.

“New parties are generally popular among young people. But Christian Democrats are not and Omtzigt’s new party has much in common with Christian Democrat values,” Rekker said.

Young respondents also rated the leaders of left-of-centre parties higher than other age groups, with D66’s Rob Jetten scoring 5.8 points compared to 4.8 points from older voters.

Young people vote for different parties than their elders, Rekker said. “They are more likely to vote for radical progressive parties and leave the traditional middle-of-the-road parties to the older voters. They have grown up in a different era of multiculturalism, the euro, and a greater emphasis on climate.”

The GroenLinks/PvdA alliance as also the biggest party in Dutch News’ own voters survey, followed by D66.

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