There's been a lot of conversation this presidential election cycle about how young people view politicians.
A question of acceptability has risen as one candidate, in particular, makes outlandish, bullying statements that don't particularly set a great example for children around the country.
During the second debate, an audience member asked,
Knowing that educators assign viewing the presidential debates as students' homework, do you feel you're modeling appropriate and positive behavior for today's youth?
Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton has also made this idea part of her campaign against Republican nominee Donald Trump, particularly in an ad showing children listening intently to some of Trump's worst quotes.
It's a relevant question. Among the many roles the president plays, he or she is a public figure expected to demonstrate American values and behavior.
So in the spin room after the third presidential debate in Las Vegas, I asked Katrina Pierson, one of Trump's more prominent surrogates, if Trump is a good role model for young women in America.
Pierson didn't directly answer the question. She said it would be more "appropriate" to ask if Clinton were a good role model for young women. She said,
I'm not sure men should be role models for women, but I think if anybody is looking to a politician to be a role model for children, then that's probably not a good idea.
She went on to say people shouldn't look to politicians as role models because career politicians "essentially sold out our country to the highest bidder."
Since Pierson said she doesn't think men should be role models for women, I asked if Trump is a good role model for young men. Pierson responded,
I think Mr. Trump is a good role model for an American who sees something wrong with their country and wants to fix it.
TL;DR: Pierson can't directly say that Trump is a good role model for young women or young men.
The election is November 8.
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Citations: New York Times