Every generation gets its chance to lead, its opportunity to shine, and leaders from both sides of the aisle emerge to help define their era. The “Greatest Generation” who fought World War II produced leaders and powerful voices from the Right like Ronald Reagan. Then again, this same generation gave us the Kennedy family and Jimmy Carter. The Baby Boomers who followed seem like a disastrously Leftist generation, with the fiasco that was the 1960s and a generation that has given us the likes of Bill & Hillary Clinton and Barack & Michelle Obama. Even some of the most prominent Rightward names from that generation like Newt Gingrich and George W. Bush don’t even come close to the impact of a leader like Reagan.
There’s a new generation beginning to take the reigns of leadership in all areas of society. These post-Baby Boomers (I hate the term “Generation X,” but I’m we’re stuck with it), represent all kinds of points of view, from salient ideas to some really off-the-wall notions. Many of the Left’s leading…umm…lights from this generation speak from the perspectives of Hollywood and the intellectual sphere, while others have begun to make a name for themselves in politics. More encouragingly, there seems to be a groundswell of conservatives under the age of 40 making a splash in Congress, as well as in statewide offices and as writers and pundits.
Here are eight people (well nine really, as one of the entries on this list is a duo) who are under 40 and are making a name for themselves on the Right. Some of these people are already household names, while others are just starting to emerge on the scene. I bristled at using the term “young conservatives,” because many of these people are around my age, and while I don’t consider myself old I wouldn’t use the word “young” to describe myself. I used 40 as a somewhat arbitrary cutoff point. There were several names, like Michelle Malkin, Paul Ryan, and Megyn Kelly, that I would’ve loved to have written about had they not already crossed that threshold.
This list is by no means intended to be exhaustive, so please don’t think if your favorite under 40 conservative isn’t on this list that I don’t think he or she is important. There are plenty more people I could’ve written about, and there are probably names that I haven’t thought of or haven’t heard of.