Democratic Congresswoman Moves to Lower Voting Age to 16 ― Not Everyone Thinks That’s a Great Idea

Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) proposed an amendment that would lower the legal voting age in federal elections from 18 years old to 16 years old.

Pressley proposed the amendment to a massive legislation package dealing with election reforms titled HR 1. While the focus of the bill is on campaign finance, Pressley noted that she believes these reforms would be strengthened by being more inclusive of young voters.

Watch the video below:

“My amendment to HR 1 strikes at one of the fundamental goals of this legislation by ensuring that those who have a stake in our democracy will also have a say in our democracy. By lowering the voting age from 18 to 16 years of age, my amendment will allow young people to have a say in our federal elections. To help shape and inform the policies that will set the course for the future. From gun violence to climate change, our young people are organizing, mobilizing, and calling us to action. They are at the forefront of social and legislative movements and have earned inclusion in our democracy.”

With some heavy references to the teens from the March for Our Lives, Pressley noted that even 16-year-olds who are not political activists can hold jobs and pay taxes.

“Beginning at the age of 16, young people are contributing to both the labor force and their local economies by paying income taxes, and yet they are deprived of the opportunity to exercise their right to vote,” Pressley said.

Pressley’s legislative co-sponsor, Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.), tweeted his support for the amendment, saying that young people deserve to cast their vote.

It should be noted that if 16-year-olds were suddenly able to vote, it could be a huge boost to Democratic vote counts, as young voters tend to vote against Republicans.

While she may have the support of a few of her fellow Democrats, she is getting mixed reactions elsewhere. Many people took to Twitter to explain why they think lowering the voting age is a bad idea:

Others pointed out the hypocrisy of the Democratic leadership team claiming freshman congressmen make continued gaffes because they are young when other members think 16-year-olds should be voting:

Although there hasn’t been a vote on Pressley’s amendment, American 16-year-olds are a long way from hitting the polls. HR 1 could skate through the House, but it is unlikely to receive a vote in the Republican-controlled Senate.

What do you think?

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Chloe Rowles
Member

Ridiculous!: In most States you have to be 18 or 21 to buy a gun, alcohol, tobacco, get married without parental consent, and 17 to get an unrestricted driver’s license, and when I worked in high school we didn’t make enough to pay taxes and got it all back , so if they are paying taxes, they must be high school drop outs who are working fulltime. The democrats would have kids who aren’t out of high school yet (most are juniors), most likely haven’t even had a government course yet, VOTING?

Erin Young
Member

Children’s minds don’t fully mature until around 23. That’s an established scientific fact. Their center of reasoning is just imature, especially at 16, let alone 18. The ONLY reason Democrats are pushing this is because they desperately need to bolster their support base. Academia in this country is hopelessly biased to the left.Our children are indoctrinated to left wing rhetoric and propoganda. So most, if pushed and encouraged by unethical, liberal teachers, would vote for the left.

Phyllis Softa
Member

Have you ever asked yourself how all of the Republican members of Congress escaped the “indoctrination” & “hopeless bias”? How did Candace Owens & Charlie Kirk followers? How do all the members of Young Republicans on campuses across the country? How did the Madison Dibble & Houston escape? How did YOU? WHY do you believe your children can’t escape this indoctrination you believe is occurring?

KhyberRifle
Member

May the force (of Mind) be with Madison everlastingly. As for you Phyl, it’s not too late for your Trump Derangement Syndrome to gracefully bow out and again allow room for a sanity. Go on record against murdering fetuses, endorse hard work and individual responsibility. Look around, see the fruits of capitalism, your freedom. Look at the world’s (other) democratic countries, their sovereignty, security, the changes they’re undergoing. USA schools morphing to a Guyana Pastor Jim’s Jonestown

Phyllis Softa
Member

Interesting that you are unable to answer the question.History will judge what the DERANGED thinking is. Is it believing that Mexico will pay for a wall—Spending billions on a monument that makes you feel safe but does very little to address the issues making you unsafe— Mexico & China pay the tariffs imposed on their exports–Being told lies is okay if the lie is what you want to hear— OR is it not putting unconditional trust in a guy that has told over 10,000 lies in 779 DAYS?

Ed
Member

I was an NCO in the military with almost 4 years in before I could legally have a beer. We’re too hung up on birthdays. It’s not as if we are tested on our qualifications or maturity before we cast our votes. Let them vote st 16. If you’ve got to fill out a tax return, you should be able to have some say in how that money is spent. Maybe it was better when we just let white, land-owning men go to the ballot.

KhyberRifle
Member

Different era I bet Ed. At 20 you were a highly accountable leader. I get the taxpayer dot connected to the vote dot but your reason is suspect. None of us, 16 or 60, have a say in how the money is spent. 16 is a transformative age: pubescence is waning, serious ass chasing is waxing, pouting is frowned upon, new Nikes, and a new doo are on tap. Pimples are popping. Too, sweet sixteen I guess is the age of consent to breed, recreationally.

I. Chin
Member

I agree that the prolonged-adolescence of modern days can extend into the 30s. What Ed misses is that these boys were under strict supervision AND by older men. There was also this thing called military protocol and hierarchy.

Military duty is a completely different animal than civilian life. That’s a fact.

Ed
Member

You can’t characterize all kids by the actions of some. Just because some entitled little assholes get so much attention doesn’t mean that they’re all like that. There are a lot of examples of 16-year-olds that are more squared away than many 25-year-olds. I was taking a calculus class last semester with a 16-year-old kid who GED’d out and started working for an engineering degree. I wish I was more like him at that age.

I. Chin
Member

True. Never say never, and all that as there will be exceptions. q.v. the 16-yr old in your class. (I guess his HS doesn’t offer it as an AP class, where I studied it in 10th grade. Not that I remember much of it.)

Phyllis Softa
Member

Khyber, you are one of the least qualified IJR posters to criticize the level of maturity of 16 yr old. My teenage nieces & nephew do not resort to your childish name calling, i.e., “Mooshell Obozo, Killary, SyPhyllis. A 16 yr old could counter with a 60 yr old shouldn’t vote because the ads indicate a 60+ yr old is distracted with concerns of retirement communities, erectile dysfunction, bladder leakage, falls, cataracts & glaucoma.

I. Chin
Member

Too short-sighted and age-discriminatory Ed. Exactly how old was the drinking age when you served? 21? When and where was this?

Let’s make a uniform 16 as legal to drink, drive, vote, own a gun, marry. Have any thoughts on that? Per your anecdote you would have been 17 and in possession of a full-auto “assault” rifle. (as if any “assault” rifle were not selective-fire)

Ed
Member

Enlisted when I was 17, drinking age was 21. Late ‘80s. Driving and working can both involve huge responsibility, but we allow it here at 16. I’ve lived in countries where the drinking age was 16 but you couldn’t drive a car until 18. There are plenty of 16-year-olds that could own their own firearms without any problem at all. If we keep defaulting to the LCD, we wouldn’t allow voting until 35. There was resistance to lowering the voting age to 18, not to mention what it took to let women vote.

I. Chin
Member

The drinking age was 18, not that I waited that long and I started bartending at 15 because the regular failed to show and I knew how to mix.

I support RAISING the voting age to 35, with possible exceptions for military service. (there are countries that require years of either military or civil service to gain that right). I believe that the voting franchise and citizenship have become “gimmes” when they should be aspirational.

KhyberRifle
Member

Raising the voting age to 50 doesn’t promise more informed voters. There’s an insidious ugly offensive going on against political perspicacity. Shame and a bludgeon will work to direct votes; then, should those blueprints fail, try to obviate the outcome

I. Chin
Member

I agree that “youth” does not mean stupid, but it’s a good rule of thumb. One can be retired, e.g. Phil, and still low- or bad-information in how you vote.

Phyllis Softa
Member

WOW, just WOW. if R’s platform & policies can’t attract today’s 18- 49 year old voters, they should take away the vote of 18-35 yr old unless they have served in the military?? You appear to want to suppress the vote of anyone that does not agree with you. Hey, what’s next suggest that the right to vote is as it was in 1789? ONLY White male land owners? Besides repealing the 15th, 19th, & 26th amendments what other ideas for voter suppression did you have in mind?

I. Chin
Member

The big ? is quantity vs. quality.

Also, like shareholders in a corporation, e.g. the US, you should be a holder, through tax payments, service, etc. to have “skin in the game”.

I. Chin
Member

Here’s another critical question for you Phil:
Do you believe that people should work for, attain their privileges?
e.g. I want to be a nurse. Should I work for it, attaining the intermediate degrees and experience or should I simply get it as a participation trophy?

I. Chin
Member

How do you feel about age of consent or marriage? If a 9-yr. old wants to have sex, q.v. Muslim practices, is this a good or bad thing? Is this a Dim or Republitard issue?

Your bigotry betrays you. If your hatred fails to manifest for Trump, then it’s for Republitards, or conservatives.

Erin Young
Member

Well said.

I. Chin
Member

These long threads are hard to follow, but thanks if you’re referring to one of my posts.

Phyllis Softa
Member

Ed, you presented the BEST argument yet to reducing the voting age. If you are having taxes withdrawn from your paycheck, you have earned the right to have a say in electing representation as how those taxes are spent. MASS GOP has the WORST argument against it in citing maturity level. We only need to look at the 2016 primary & general elections to see that age does not guarantee emotional maturity. Mexico paying for the wall was as divorced from reality as free 4 yr college.

I. Chin
Member

By that argument I should have been able to vote a 14.
“Maturity” is hard to determine. It’s like imposing stress-testing and psych evals on driver’s licenses or concealed-carry. The latter is part of a Constitutional right.
The big difference should be “has this citizen demonstrated judgement , contribution, and experience” as well as the tax-commitment.

I. Chin
Member

How do you feel about Pelosi’s push to grant voting rights to criminal aliens?

It’s merely formalizing what’s been happening. Can we, as US citizens, then vote in Guatemala, Honduras, or Mexico?

Erin Young
Member

Your argument is asinine, Ed.

James
Member

A lot of America’s kids have a “stake in our democracy”. Take for example, the 6 year old who is forced – by law – to attend school. I submit the voting age should be lowered to 6 and that they too would become eligible to join the military, work, pay taxes and defend their stake in democracy.

WellHungChad
Member

I think the voting age should be lowered to the terrible two’s. Children of that age cry, get red faced and stompy footed when they don’t get their way….just like adults that are Democrats.

KhyberRifle
Member

It’s real simple, if you don’t want bad leftist behavior from your charges, Pavlov them. Dangle the carrot – promise them they can wear their Barry jammies, adopt any gender they ‘identify as’, drink an entire big gulp soda. Swift and severe punishment when they come home from preschool with a maga hat. Most importantly, listen to them, get a sense of their victimhood, and bus them to the polls; remind them they needn’t wait until the afterlife for the rewards of collectivism.

James
Member

Have to admit it; but that IS a better idea and spot on.

I. Chin
Member

Yes, we’d have Bob the Builder and Barney in an administration headed by whoever wasn’t the biggest poopy-head. The new national anthem would be “The Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round”.

…and milk + cookies (with alternates for the lactose-intolerant) would be a right.

Phyllis Softa
Member

We currently have Don the con man & reality TV star currently in the WH! Bob the Builder and Barney would be an improvement of astronomical proportions. For starters, we would not have documented evidence of them lying to the American public over 10,000 times in 778 days!

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