On Monday, Oregon lawmakers have introduced a bill that would ask voters to amend the state’s constitution to lower the voting age from 18 to 16-years-old.
If the bill is passed, the question could be put before voters in the 2020 presidential election.
Oregon would become the first state to lower the statewide voting age to 16, which Democratic State Sen. Shemia Fagan said during a news conference in Salem, would give younger voters the opportunity “to participate in the ballot — about decisions that affect their homes, their clean air, their future, their schools and, as we’ve seen, their very lives.”
“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 experience homelessness and they’re begging us to take action to protect their future.”
The bill would let 16-year-old cast ballots in all elections, including federal-level offices. Since 2003, 13 states have introduced bills to lower the voting age. None have passed.
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