Democrat Hillary Clinton is 68, Republican Donald Trump is 70 — not exactly a couple of spring chickens. But there is young blood in their parties.
Meet Trevor Doiron, 17, and Jace Laquerre, also 17, the youngest New England delegates attending the upcoming conventions. Trevor, from Jay, Maine, is the youngest Democrat. Jace, from Colchester, Vermont, is the youngest Republican.
They spoke with WBUR's Morning Edition about the upcoming conventions.
On why they got involved in the delegation:
Trevor Doiron: "Some people have the attitude that this generation doesn’t want to work. They don’t want to do anything, they can’t do anything, and I really wanted to prove that, you know what, this generation can do great things, and in my case, on the national stage."
Jace Laquerre: "What inspired me to become a delegate is along the lines of what Trevor is saying, to give millennials and young people to have a voice. I think we’re very underrepresented on the national stage, and at the convention four years ago in Tampa, the average age of a delegate was about 65 years old."
On what their communities think of them:
Trevor Doiron: "My community is very proud. I hail from a town that has less than 5,000. I’m in rural Maine. So they’re very proud to see that someone like that is doing things on the national stage."
Jace Laquerre: "A lot of people are happy they’re having a person from their town, especially a young person representing them on the national stage to help give them a voice."
On their parties' respective candidates:
Trevor Doiron: "Hillary Clinton has dedicated her entire life to public service. I mean whether it was her time as first lady where she worked to get eight million children health insurance, or when she made the bold move in 1995 to declare that human rights were women’s rights and women’s rights were human rights. We saw her as a U. S. senator fight for funding for families of 9/11, and I think she has a lot of experience and a lot of expertise to bring to the table."
Jace Laquerre: "The case I would make for [Donald Trump] — he’s a business man, he knows how to fix the economy we have. We’re about $20 trillion in debt right now."
On bringing civility to political discourse:
Jace Laquerre: "Trevor was nice enough to reach out to me before. I think we both have a mutual respect for what the other did. We really understand what the other had to go through. I do think there is a problem with rhetoric this season, and I do think we need to calm it down."
Trevor Doiron: "I would agree with that. We have to work together to find common ground on the issues."
Correction: When WBUR first reported this story, not all states had listed their delegates. There are now additional young delegates and we have corrected our copy to say that Jace and Trevor are the youngest delegates "in New England." We regret the error.
This article was originally published on July 15, 2016.
This segment aired on July 15, 2016.