For a while the 2024 presidential election felt like a repeat of 2020, but the main characters were older. The past couple of months, though, have proved that this bizarre cycle is anything but the same as it was four years ago.

In May, Donald Trump was convicted in New York State court on 34 counts of falsifying business records for hush-money payments made during his 2016 campaign. His sentencing was supposed to take place on July 11, but has been postponed. He is also facing indictments in three other cases on charges accusing him of mishandling classified information and seeking to interfere in the 2020 election.

Since Trump’s conviction, this unusual presidential race has taken several other twists and turns. For starters, President Joe Biden’s poor performance in this cycle’s first presidential debate cast doubt on whether he can continue on to be the Democratic Party nominee. As Democrats were hashing out Biden’s viability as a candidate, the Supreme Court ruled, on July 1, that former presidents have broad immunity for official acts, complicating the cases against Trump. As a result, the New York State court agreed to postpone Trump’s aforementioned sentencing until September.

Trump has pleaded not guilty to all the charges, but these cases make him the first current or former president to face a criminal indictment or be convicted of a crime. Still, according to a handful of young voters who spoke with Teen Vogue, for a generation that’s grown up amid one historic event after the last, the former president’s conviction doesn’t feel all that monumental.

Many left-leaning young voters feel Trump’s guilty charges should, hypothetically, be a big deal, but they say the charges don’t change their mind much about a candidate they already deeply dislike. Though some have reservations about Biden’s age and electoral viability, they still plan to vote for him in November.

Sixteen-year-old Owen Brosanders, a climate organizer from Tucson, tells Teen Vogue, “I’m not sure how much of an impact this will have on the outcome of the presidential election.” Brosanders, who calls himself a “dissatisfied Democrat,” says other recent unprecedented moments, including the Supreme Court overturning the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling and the insurrection at the Capitol on January 6, 2021, loom larger in his mind than Trump’s conviction. “Those two events were, like, the biggest unprecedented things. I feel like the Trump trial is up there, but not as much.”

Brosanders will be too young to vote in November, but the results of the election could shape his view of the country’s electoral system for years to come. “For me, it’ll really come after the election,” he says. “Like, seeing if it’s possible for someone with a felony conviction to be president, that will really influence it.” He adds, “The distrust of the system is really insane.”

Like Brosanders, Lea Nepomuceno, an 18-year-old from San Diego who is a criminal-justice reform advocate, says Trump’s conviction won’t have a material impact on how she votes in the 2024 election. “Trump’s felony doesn’t necessarily change anything in the cycle,” she says. “It’s not going to change how I plan to vote.”

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