(NewsNation) — On both sides of the aisle, young candidates are running for office, eager to prove that Generation Z — Americans born in the late 1990s to early 2010s — can govern.
Two of those candidates, one a Republican and one a Democrat, joined NewsNation Prime on Sunday to discuss their candidacies for Congress.
Karoline Lovett, a former Trump White House staffer, is running for the Republican nomination for U.S. House in New Hampshire’s 1st Congressional District. She is just 24 years old, but should she be elected would be 25 when she would take office, making her eligible to serve in the Congress.
NewsNation Prime’s Natasha Zouves asked Lovett how she would address the problem of gun violence.
“I believe that America — as many Americans do — does not have a gun problem. We have a culture problem. The one commonality in all of these shootings is that it occurs from mentally deranged, isolated young men,” she explained, suggesting that cultural changes could reduce the number of shootings in America.
Zouves pressed Lovett, suggesting that these solutions are no different than what Republicans have promoted for years.
“Many are looking to you … for a fresh perspective, hoping that Gen Z will come in and make changes. It does sound an awful lot like the same thing we’ve been hearing from the GOP for 20 years now. What makes you any different?” she asked.
“Well, actually, that’s not true at all. In fact I am one of the few young conservative voices running for office across this country. And something that I speak about all the time is the indoctrination of my generation, which is having a direct impact on some of these shootings we’ve seen over the last 20 years,” Lovett replied, pointing to liberal cultural views she believes are harming Americans.
Meanwhile, 25-year-old Maxwell Frost is running for the Democratic nomination for the U.S. House in Florida’s 10th Congressional District.
Frost did not agree to appear alongside Lovett, prompting Zouves to ask him about the importance of talking to the other side of the aisle.
“What about when it comes to talking to the other side? Isn’t it important to loop them into the conversation and to respect other people’s viewpoints?” she asked.
“A hundred percent, and that’s what I’ve done throughout my entire career — from working at the American Civil Liberties Union, which is a nonpartisan organization which works with folks from both the left and the right,” he replied. “The same thing I did at the March for Our Lives when we worked with the gun owners and folks from the other side to figure out how we can come together to, number one, solve this issue of gun violence but also make a difference.”
Zouves asked him how he would address that violence.
“We’ve heard the same rhetoric from the right for years and years that it’s just mental health. And I will say mental health is a part of it, of course … First off, I think we have to make sure that guns are not falling” into the wrong hands,” he said, noting his support for universal background checks and red flag laws as well as support for community-based violence interventions.