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How will Gen Z, now on congressional ballots, impact our politics?


The minimum age to run for Congress is 25. That means in 2022 candidates from Generation Z are running for the first time.

The Pew Research Center defines Gen Z as those born beginning in 1997. Its members have grown up with only a faint memory of life before 9/11, if they have one at all. They've seen economic recessions, protests against wealth inequality and social injustice, a global pandemic, and the looming threat of climate change.

This has been the social media and smartphone generation — they've hardly known a life without it. The years leading up to, and including, the Trump presidency were formative.

On the next Charlotte Talks, we discuss the factors that have impacted Gen Z, what candidates on both sides of the aisle are running on, where the money supporting them is coming from and what their impact could be on the future of politics.


Elena Moore, NPR Politics Podcast producer

Taylor Giorno, money-in-politics reporter at OpenSecrets

John Della Volpe, director of polling at the Harvard Kennedy Institute of Politics & author of "Fight: How Gen Z Is Channeling Their Fear and Passion to Save America"

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Gabe Altieri is a Senior Producer for Charlotte Talks with Mike Collins. Prior to joining WFAE in 2022, he worked for WSKG Public Media in Binghamton, New York.