'Squad' Member Ayanna Pressley Introduces Amendment to Lower Voting Age to 16
'My amendment would enfranchise young Americans'
Democratic "Squad" member Rep. Ayanna Pressley has proposed an amendment to her party’s election bill to lower the voting age to 16.
Pressley said on the House floor:
“By lowering the federal voting age from 18 to 16 years of age, my amendment would enfranchise young Americans to help shape and form the policies that will set the course for our future."
“We must do right by the young organizers and activists who have fought for our democracy,” she concluded.
“They have a stake hold in our democracy and deserve to have a stake at the ballot box.”
But the amendment failed 125-302, with those voting in favor being her fellow Democrats.
The amendment would have been included in the so-called For the People Act or the HR 1 voting rights package.
If signed into law, #HR1 will:— Rep. Nancy Mace (@RepNancyMace) March 3, 2021
❌ Use taxpayer $$ to fund politicians’ election campaigns, whether they support them or not
❌ Legalize ballot harvesting nationwide
❌ Toss out state voter ID laws
I'm voting no. Here's why: pic.twitter.com/LzdCLU6QSK
Progressive leaders hope to grow their voter base by lowering the voting age, as many younger people tend to be more liberal.
65 percent of people ages 18 to 24 voted for Joe Biden in the 2020 election, a favorable trend for Democrats.
Illinois Democratic Rep. Jan Schakowsky said in a news release about lowering the voting age:
“All over the country, and in my district especially, we see young activists working tirelessly to make their voices heard — from battling climate change and gun violence to advocating for racial justice and economic equality."
The failed amendment and HR 1 were slammed by Republicans who called it radical and compromising election integrity.
“Now the majority of Democrat members voted to change the legal voting age to 16. Apparently they don’t think #HR1 — which would fund political campaigns with taxpayer dollars, legalize ballot harvesting, and nationalize our elections — is radical enough already,” Wisconsin Republican Rep. Scott Fitzgerald tweeted.
Now the majority of Democrat members voted to change the legal voting age to 16. Apparently they don’t think #HR1—which would fund political campaigns with taxpayer dollars, legalize ballot harvesting, and nationalize our elections—is radical enough already.— Rep. Scott Fitzgerald (@RepFitzgerald) March 3, 2021
While youngsters take lead with the Black Lives Matter movement and gun control, those under 18 should not be allowed to vote.
Nope. Bad call. Have you met many 16 year olds?— MM Wilson (@ememwilson123) March 3, 2021
It is fair to say the vast majority of 16-year-olds are not in a good position to make choices that would directly impact the country.