HOOKSETT, N.H. — "Our generation just hasn't fallen in love with the Clintons."
In a sea of Bernie Sanders supporters, Lisa Demaine, a senior at the University of New Hampshire, wasn't alone in her admission.
Like Demaine, thousands of newly-eligible voters in the Granite State, and across the nation, came of age long after the Clinton years, when former President Bill Clinton and his wife, then-first lady Hillary Clinton, occupied the White House and Americans enjoyed years of uninterrupted peace and prosperity.
Instead, in a game of "Name the first word that comes to mind" many Granite State millennials are quick to associate Bill with "Lewinsky," Hillary with "Benghazi" (or "emails") and "the Clintons" with "power."
"We were born into the end of Clinton's presidency and we didn't experience the leadership he provided — which he did," Demaine explained. "We didn't know [Hillary Clinton] as a first lady, we just know her from her recent issues which have become issues."
"Don't get me wrong, she does fight for people, but she has a closet and [Vermont Sen.] Bernie Sanders doesn't have a closet," Demaine added, proceeding to name a few of the first lady's "skeletons."
Demaine's comments illustrate one of the key reasons Clinton, the leading Democratic presidential candidate, doesn't have the youngest members of the New Hampshire electorate drooling over her the way they have over Sanders.
Pair the difficulty Clinton's had connecting with voters — highlighted by political pundits and members of her own party — with the scandals casting shadows over her campaign, and the former secretary of state is left trying to win young voters with her policies.
And in New Hampshire, that's proven difficult as well.
"It's not just not having falling in love with her, a lot of it has to do with her policies," said Eric Petersson, a junior at UNH and steadfast Sanders supporter.
Both Clinton and Sanders have flip-flopped on a host of issues — Clinton most notably on free trade, Sanders on immunity for gun dealers — but young voters seem more forgiving of the 74-year-old socialist senator.
"He was against Keystone from the beginning. He was against TPP from the beginning. He's against fracking, which Hillary Clinton hasn't said much on. He doesn't take money from the billionaires," Griffin Sinclair-Wingate, a young voter and climate change activist with 350 Action, told the Washington Examiner.
"Hillary Clinton can go up there and say everything I want to hear, but I'm just not going to believe her because of where her money's coming from," he added.
"Yeah, that's one of the primary reasons I'm drawn to Sanders," Petersson chimed in. "I like the transparency of his campaign, he's not like candidates where you feel like something is being shielded from you."
Indeed, in a recent WMUR/UNH survey of New Hampshire voters, 63 percent of 18 to 34-year-old respondents said Clinton is the "least honest" Democratic candidate while only 3 percent named Sanders. The same age group also identified Sanders as the more likeable (77 percent) and more progressive candidate (77 percent).
"I had this discussion with a few people the other day and young people kind of see Bernie Sanders as this cool grandfather and Hillary Clinton is the more stern, trying-to-be-cool mom who's not quite there yet," Petersson explained.
Young people also see Sanders as a candidate who's unwilling to engage in negative campaigning, and they appreciate that.
Hours before Petersson, Demaine and Sinclair-Wingate bundled up and trekked through the snow to see Sanders speak at the Southern University of New Hampshire, Clinton was taking sharp jabs at Sanders during a campaign event in Iowa.
"Sen. Sanders doesn't talk much about foreign policy, but when he does it raises concerns," Clinton said. "Sometimes it can sound like he really hasn't thought it through."
"I think Hillary Clinton probably has more experience when it comes to foreign policy, but I think Bernie Sanders probably has more motives for peace and is more representative of my generation and what's important to us," Sinclair-Wingate said in reaction.
Sanders declined to respond to Clinton's attacks as he spoke to the students and locals packed inside SUNH's dining hall.
"I'm running for president not because I think my Democratic opponents are terrible human beings or because they're not smart. I'm running for president because I think it is just too late for establishment politics and establishment economics," he told the crowd.
For nearly 45 minutes, the Vermont senator stuck to that message. He aggressively attacked Wall Street, denounced the influence of money in politics and encouraged his audience to embrace ideas he half-jokingly described as "radical."
It was everything Demaine had come to hear and most of what she hadn't heard from Clinton.
"I'm an absentee voter and I just voted for him today," she said. "I was so proud to check that box."