Chipotle continues as a campaign stop

Chipotle seems to be a crucial pitstop on the road to the White House.

On Monday, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton stopped by one of the burrito chain’s locations in Ohio, where she ordered a chicken burrito bowl. In 2012, Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney ate a carnitas burrito bowl at a Chipotle in Denver. President Barack Obama has repeatedly visited the restaurant, and last June caused a pseudo-controversy after he was photographed reaching over the sneeze guard.

Sure, Chipotle’s food enjoys cultish fandom -- but how did the supporters of a quick-fix burrito joint grow to include members of the country's highest echelon?

For starters, the chain is popular with young people, a coveted voting bloc.

“With the more fluent millennial audience, Chipotle resonates very well,” R.J. Hottovy, senior restaurant analyst at the market research firm Morningstar, told The Huffington Post on Tuesday. “Chipotle itself shows that its brand scores well with millennials, and that’s probably at the forefront of a lot of these appearances.”

Chipotle spokesman Chris Arnold said candidates may be trying to leverage the company's reputation among the chain's famous fans -- including singer-songwriter Jason Mraz and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson -- as well as its popularity with young diners.

“We have a lot of fans and customers, including many well-known people,” Arnold wrote in an email to HuffPost. “Young consumers are also big fans, and maybe [politicians] are looking to connect with that audience.”

Unlike some fast-food rivals, such as McDonald’s or Taco Bell, Chipotle has a reputation for serving fresh ingredients and humanely raised, antibiotic-free meat.

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