Young Iowa voters: After tonight’s debate, we’re caucusing for Cruz

A majority of young voters convened by Fusion told host Alicia Menendez that after Thursday night’s Republican presidential debate, they will vote for Texas Senator Ted Cruz in next week’s Iowa caucus.

Out of eight panel members, six said they were either solidly for Cruz, or debating between Cruz and another candidate.

You can watch a replay of the panel here.

Brooke D. a registered Republican, said she didn’t know whom she would support before the debate, but that Cruz successfully talked up his record.

“This solidified my choice,” she said.

None mentioned Donald Trump, who did not attend the Fox-hosted event. Shane K., a registered Republican, observed that Donald Trump’s absence seemed to give the candidates a better opportunity to air their views.

“He takes away the ability for candidates to respond seriously to issues,” he said. “His absence gave some time to focus on the more serious issues.”

Trump had a 7-point lead on Cruz heading into Thursday’s debate according to Real Clear Politics.

Only one panelist said he was considering Marco Rubio. Another, Tiffany W., said that as an evangelical voter she was actually turned off by the Florida Senator’s repeated discussion of his faith.

“We need a commander in chief, not a pastor in chief,” she said.

Fusion’s panel brought together 14 Iowa Republicans, a majority of whom said they came in undecided.

Note: A random list of eight registered Republican voters ages 18 to 34 were sourced by Bendixen & Amandi International from all over the Des Moines area. Prospective respondents were contacted randomly, and a diverse sampling of voters were screened to qualify for this research study.