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Who will get Iran’s youth vote?

By Staff Writer / February 25, 2009

Reporters on the Job: How ready are Iran’s young people to rally again behind Mohamad Khatami as president (read the Monitor's report here), as they did in such large numbers in 1997 and 2001?

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Not very ready, according to some Iranian friends that I’ve spoken to.

“I won’t vote,” one recent graduate, an artist, told me.

The depth of disillusion with Iranian politics among those who once supported Khatami can’t be understated.

But other Iranians I spoke with during the past month say that reformists have learned a lesson from their own past vote boycotts and apathy.

What lesson? That keeping away on voting day guarantees a win by hard-liners like President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. In June, we’ll see if that lesson or disillusionment wins out among Iran’s youth.

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