California legislators are considering two Assembly Constitutional Amendments (ACA) that would lower the voting from 18 to 17. ACA 4 and ACA 8 have both made it out of committee and will be voted on this year. If they pass, 17-year-olds will be able to vote as soon as the primary.
There are several good reasons to pass this law. As 17-year-olds, kids are already able to make major life decisions such as determine which colleges to apply to and enlist in the military. So it begs the question, can and should the age be lowered?
Lowering the age is probably a good thing. The only thing that concerns me is the apathy. Will they vote? It does also bring up an opportunity to amplify voter education and increase voter turnout. It’s great to consider increasing the voter pool by allowing younger voters, but we have a serious problem getting folks to vote in this country. Despite the fact that voting has been made relatively easy, participation has been horrifically low. I’d like to see the legislature address the issue of voter participation. Perhaps passing a law that gives voters a workday/school day pass for proof they voted, the stub of the ballot with a verified acceptance from the county registrar would be good.
I say yes. Let the 17-year-olds vote.
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