Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel on Monday said that if college students don’t return for in-person learning this fall, it could affect voter turnout among younger people in key states.
“If these college campuses are vacant in the fall, it really changes some of these battleground states if students aren’t there,” Ms. McDaniel said on “Fox & Friends.”
“You’re not going to be able, for example in New Hampshire, to do same-day registration and then turn out all these college kids,” she said. “So that’s going to change a lot of these states and the calculus for Democrats in some of their turnout models.”
President Trump is pushing for K-12 schools, as well as colleges and universities, to reopen their doors for in-person learning for the upcoming academic year.
Polling has generally shown presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joseph R. Biden outperforming Mr. Trump among younger voters.
Despite the coronavirus pandemic, Ms. McDaniel said they have already registered more voters overall than they did in the entire 2016 cycle.
Republicans have managed to eat into Democratic registration advantages in key states like Pennsylvania and North Carolina in recent months.
“We’ve been building up our ground game for the past year,” Ms. McDaniel said. “We’ve had people in all of these battleground states. We have the highest staff that we’ve ever had and we’ve activated over a million volunteers. And the Biden operation has not been existent.”
She said when the pandemic hit, they went “completely virtual.”
“We haven’t lost a step,” Ms. McDaniel said.