Some Oregon lawmakers want to lower the voting age from 18 to 16-years-old, in an effort to help young people to participate in decisions that impact on their future.
(Cherokee County voter registration and elections Commission)
The Oregon legislature is floating a bill to reduce the questions to the voters on the amendment to the state Constitution, the voting age from 18 to 16-years-old, under a plan presented on Monday.
If it is exceeded, can be put the question before voters in the 2020 presidential election. Oregon is the first state to reduce state-wide voting age to 16, which would give younger voters the opportunity “to participate in the vote on decisions, their houses, their clean air, their future, their schools, and, as we have seen, even your life,” democratic state Sen. Shemia Fagan said during a press conference in Salem.
“Sixteen-year-olds are subject to our criminal justice system,” Fagan added, according to the Salem Statesman Journal. “They are couch-surfing with friends, while their families experiencing homelessness, and they are begging us to take their future.”
Issues facing young people were the catalyst for the reduction of the voting age in the past. The 21st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, ratified in 1971, the voting age from 21 to 18. The measure was in part fueled by young people, the draft for the Vietnam war, had become increasingly unpopular.
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“We need to be able to our work on the ballot and protect the policy that said we have to work so hard to pass,” South Salem High School senior Maria Torres, according to the Oregonian.
The account of 16-year-old cast a ballot in all elections, including Federal-level offices. Since 2003, 13 States have introduced to reduce the bills the voting age. None have passed.