They may not have been able to vote for him, but many youths are already feeling optimistic about Barack Obama's presidency. Not only did 49 percent of 8- to 18-year-olds say they feel hopeful about the election of Obama in a Harris Interactive Youth Center of Excellence YouthQuery survey, but most teenagers surveyed believe Obama's election is more important than other recent events seemingly important to the age group.
For instance, 65 percent of the 829 13- to 18-year-olds surveyed late last year said Obama's presidency is more important than the release of the seventh Harry Potter book. Another 64 percent believe his election is more important than the introduction of the iPod. In addition to feeling hopeful, around 40 percent of the 8- to 18-year-old respondents also ascribed the words "happy," "excited" and "proud" to Obama's election, while "sad," "angry" and "depressed" were the least cited feelings. Free, 4 pages. (585) 272-8400, www.harrisinteractive.com/news/pubs/Harris_Interactive_News_2009_01_15.pdf.