Washington, DC– Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D), who represents thee-fourths of Boston in the U.S. House of Representatives, proposed an amendment to lower the federal voting age from 18 to 16 years old.
Why, exactly did Rep. Pressley introduce this amendment? Well, she explains in the press release:
'Across this nation, young people are leading the way – from gun violence, to climate change, to the future of work – they are organizing, mobilizing, and calling us to action,' said Congresswoman Pressley. 'My amendment to H.R. 1, the For The People Act, will strengthen the promise of our nation’s democracy.'
The House Rules Committee approved the amendment and allowed the bill to proceed to the floor.
Chairman of that committee, Rep. Jim McGovern (D), who represents Massachusetts' 2nd district, supports the bill, "Decisions we make in Congress today are going to affect the young people of this country for decades. They deserve a say in our democracy & that’s what this amendment does."
While Pressley and McGovern believe this bill is essential for empowering young people in the United States, others were far more critical. Staying local, our own governor, Charlie Baker, has his reservations about the bill: “I did raise three teenagers, and based on that I’d be pretty dubious about lowering it to 16.”
The amendment would only apply to federal votes, while any state and city elections will comply with whichever rules they currently have in place.