Top Reasons

National Youth Rights Association of Southeast Florida
Wants a Lower Voting Age

• Youth pay over 10 billion dollars in sales tax alone every year and many millions in income tax, but they have no say as to how that money will be used. This can be classified as nothing else but taxation without representation.

• Before graduating high school, over 80% of youth will work under child labor laws that they have no say in creating. They will earn their own money, but have to forfeit a large portion of it to taxes that benefit causes that yield no consideration to the issues affecting youth.

• Teens are often tried as adults in criminal court, forcing them to bear the consequences of adulthood, without its natural right: voting. How can a 16-year-old be considered an adult in court, but dismissed as a child in the electoral process?

• Youth are well-educated, free-thinking, and certainly smart enough to vote. That is an assertion with which even the federal government agrees. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 states that anyone who has completed the sixth grade has both the knowledge and the comprehension to vote in any election.

• Youth do not have true governmental representation. In order for legislators to properly understand the issues affecting youth from a relevant perspective, youth must be given the right to vote. Legislators must be given the ability to hear directly from the youth about issues that affect them. The representation necessary to accomplish this can only be gained through suffrage.

• This newfound representation will, in turn, improve systems such as education that will better the entire community. The current voting age is a disservice to the political system. It robs the system of its virtue and does not allow elected officials to hear the needs of the youth.

• The right to vote is currently given at the worst possible time. At 18, many citizens move away from home: going to college, looking for work, or joining the armed forces. This only makes the voting process more difficult. First time voters are unlikely to go through the burdensome process of obtaining an absentee ballot or traveling back home. Local issues, too, will affect stationary 16-year-olds much more than 18 -year-olds.

• In order to improve society as a whole, we must increase voter turnout and have more educated voters. By lowering the voting age to 16, youth will register to vote in a familiar community and will quickly form the habit of voting, thereby increasing voter turnout in the long run.

• Youth will be better voters. By reducing the voting age to 16, we give our high schools the opportunity to include important voter issues in their curricula. Thus, we can ensure that the youth are properly educated, making them the most informed voters in the country