Sep 22, 2022
The conservative kids are all right
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Maxwell Frost, a Bernie Sanders-endorsed gun control activist and former Uber driver, is set to become the first Generation Z member of Congress after November's election at just 25 years old.
The Florida Democrat who won a primary in his state's safely blue 10th Congressional District is what many might consider an archetype of the newest generation entering public life.As a young progressive Democrat, his resume includes work with the American Civil Liberties Union and the gun reform group March for Our Lives. Frost has been arrested during a protest. Progressive leaders including Sanders (I-VT) and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) have taken notice.
“Zoomers,” as they’re called colloquially, are shaping up to be one of the most progressive generations so far. Nearly 70% said they favor an “activist government” that intervenes to solve societal problems, according to Pew Research Center polling in 2020. Fifty-four percent have a negative view of capitalism.
But the highly visible, progressive activist side of Gen Z doesn’t give the whole picture, and Iowa state Rep. Joe Mitchell is on a mission to help young conservatives change the image of their generation one election at a time. His organization Run GenZ has been recruiting younger candidates to run for public office and start making a difference on the local and state levels.
“We have a massive generation of very hardcore progressive and a lot of self-identified socialists, so the only way to stop that is to get young conservatives elected to office on a platform that communicates to our generation that the policies that have destroyed millions of lives across the across the world are not the kinds of policies we want here in America,” Mitchell told the Washington Examiner.
Mitchell’s senior year of college wasn’t typical — he won his first bid for political office in an upset primary victory, then coasted through the general election in his safely Republican district, graduated from Drake University, and was sworn in as the youngest ever Iowa representative at age 21. He started getting asked to speak at various conservative conferences such as Turning Point and met other young people who wanted to do what he did but lacked the support.
“My main message to people to speak is just say, ‘I'm not an anomaly. I'm not an outlier,’” he said. “I was never a 4.0 student — I just went out there and did the hard work. Everyone else has the ability to do that.”
Now he’s helping other young conservatives get elected to statehouses, school boards, and city councils across the country through Run GenZ, which he founded to "prepare Generation Z leaders to take action, take charge, and take control of the future by supporting the vision of the founders of this country and supporting conservative political values such as limited government, free market capitalism, individual responsibility, and fiscal restraint."
It's a little loose about what constitutes Gen Z. While Pew begins the generation on Jan. 1, 1997 — making the oldest 25 in 2022 — Run GenZ works with candidates ages 18 to 30. It also has a broad base when it comes to the kind of candidates it'll back. So long as you believe in the Constitution and free markets and love America, you can apply for help with a campaign from Run GenZ.
“We always joke that if there was a Democrat who believed all those things, we’d probably admit them,” Mitchell said.
The organization advises candidates with everything from website-building to fundraising plans and pairs them with a mentor to guide them through the process. These include Caleb Hanna, a Run GenZ co-founder and the youngest black person ever elected to a state house when he joined the West Virginia House of Delegates at age 19 in 2018. State Rep. Amber Mariano is another co-founder, and she won her first election in Florida at age 21 in 2016.
There are more experienced politicians who help. The organization's advisory board includes former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, ex-Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who was energy secretary in former President Donald Trump's administration, and John Sununu, White House chief of staff for the late President George H.W. Bush and New Hampshire governor for six years before that.
There are a few sticking points when it comes to selling young candidates, some of whom might not even be legally able to buy a drink.
One might be encouraging political office too early, resulting in career politicians and swamp creatures — after all, some complain that President Joe Biden was first elected to the Senate when he was just 29 and has been in Washington ever since. But that’s precisely why Run GenZ doesn’t yet endorse candidates for anything higher than statewide offices.
School boards, county positions, and city councils often don’t pay or offer a stipend too small to make a living off of, and most state representatives need to keep a day job if they want to support a family. At the low end, New Hampshire gives its legislators $100 per year, while at the ceiling, only California and New York pay more than six figures, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Those who want to enter public service at these levels can’t be doing it for the money because there’s hardly any to be had.
Another is that the most active voting demographic is those 60 years or older, meaning Gen Z candidates have to make the pitch that candidates who came of age in nearly another world will serve the conservative interests of their older base. But that’s not as hard as one might think, Mitchell said, and his track record proves it: Run GenZ has secured 42 victories and 20 losses so far in 2022, a win rate of nearly 70%.
“The policies on a state, local, or federal level are going to affect our generation the most, and they're going to affect our children the most and our grandchildren the most,” he said. “We should have a seat at the table to make sure that this endless amount of spending that is happening right now and the policies, whether it's education or healthcare or the economy, that we have a say in them because we're the ones [who] are all going to have to live with the choices that are made today.”
This year, two Gen Z House Republican candidates, or close to it in age, have realistic shots of making it to Congress. In New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District, in the Granite State's eastern half, GOP nominee Karoline Leavitt, 25, is locked in a tight race against Rep. Chris Pappas (D-NH). And in North Carolina's newly created southern Raleigh suburbs 13th Congressional District, Bo Hines, 26, is fighting for the swing seat against Democratic state Sen. Wiley Nickel.More from Examiner
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Where to Watch Weber State vs UC Davis Football Today
Getty UC-Davis seeks a key win on Saturday.
Weber State takes on California-Davis in a key Big Sky Conference matchup on Saturday, September 24.Note: Heavy may earn an affiliate commission if you sign up via a link on this page
The game (10 p.m. ET start time) won’t be on TV, but anyone in the US can watch Weber State vs UC Davis live on ESPN+ right here:
ESPN+ includes hundreds of live college football games in 2022, dozens of other live sports, every 30-for-30 documentary and additional original content (both video and written) for $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year (or $13.99 per month for a bundle of all three of ESPN+, Disney+ and Hulu).
Once signed up for ESPN+, you can watch Weber State vs UC Davis live on the ESPN app or ESPN.com.
Compatible devices for the ESPN app include Roku, Roku TV, Amazon Fire TV or Firestick, Apple TV, Chromecast, PlayStation 4 or 5, Xbox One or Series X/S, any device with Android TV (such as a Sony TV or Nvidia Shield), Samsung Smart TV, Oculus Go, iPhone, Android phone, iPad or Android tablet.Weber State vs UC Davis Preview
Weber State (3-0) seeks a strong start in Big Sky Conference play while California-Davis (1-2) looks to get back on track.
It marks a rematch of a tight contest from 2021 when UC-Davis rallied in the second half to beat WSU 17-14. Trent Tompkins scored a game-winning rushing touchdown with 27 seconds left to win the game for the Aggies.
“They’re definitely one of those top teams in the Big Sky and we know that, and they know the same thing about us that they need to be ready to go,” WSU head coach Jay Hill said via the Standard-Examiner’s Brett Hein. “These games, there’s always tons riding on it every year.”
Weber State is the only team in all of NCAA football (FBS, FCS, Div. II or Div. III) with ???? interceptions in the first three games of the season.
All 10 picks ⤵️#WeAreWeber pic.twitter.com/hbZ2fMk2GN
— Weber State Football ???? (@weberstatefb) September 21, 2022
Tompkins has been a factor at times for the Aggies in this young season with a couple of touchdowns and a 3-yard per carry average. However, he and the Aggies have seen a tough go of things with a close loss to South Dakota State and blowout loss to California.
The Aggies couldn’t keep up with the Cal Golden Bears in a 34-13 loss to open the season. UC-Davis surrendered 415 yards of total offense, but the Aggies also piled on the yards with 387 yards of total offense. It didn’t translate to points amid two interceptions.
South Dakota State had UC-Davis in check with a 24-10 lead in the fourth quarter, but the Aggies rallied with two touchdowns in the final three minutes. Two missed extra points ultimately cost the Aggies the game against the Jackrabbits.
UC-Davis finally hit on all cylinders in a 43-13 rout of San Diego last week. That included two touchdown runs by Tompkins, and Miles Hastings threw for 270 yards and three touchdowns.
“I told the guys we’re in the ring,” Aggies head coach Dan Hawkins said via the Sacramento Bee’s Joe Davidson. “We’re not an up-and-comer. We’re not Johnny Come Lately. We’ve won the conference championship and we’ve been in the playoffs, and (so has Weber State). We have to train like that, practice like that and play like that.”
You could feel the energy in our home opener. What an atmosphere! #GoAgs pic.twitter.com/GRgb8Tajw8
— UC Davis Football (@UCDfootball) September 19, 2022
WSU meanwhile has been clicking all season with wins over Western Oregon, Utah State, and Utah Tech by 28 or more points. The Wildcats average 41 points and 455.7 yards per game. WSU’s defense limits teams to 236.3 yards and 8.67 points per contest.
Wildcats quarterback Barron Bronson has been tough to stop with 722 yards passing and six touchdowns versus three interceptions. Damon Bankston and Josh Davis provide a two-headed monster in the backfield. Bankston has 265 yards rushing and two touchdowns while Davis has 206 yards and two scores.
Ty MacPherson is a big playmaker with 243 yards receiving and five touchdowns this season for the Wildcats. Jacob Sharp can also make plays. He has 246 yards receiving and a touchdown.