Today, U.S. House Rep Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), who is a member of “The Squad,” introduced an amendment to H.R. 1, the For The People Act, that would lower the federal election voting age from 18-years-old to 16-years-old.
The amendment failed on a 125-302 vote in the House, but the majority of Democrats voted in favor, 125-93, according to C-SPAN. No Republicans supported the measure.
In her press release about the amendment, Pressley said, “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.”
Pressley added that she believed her amendment would “strengthen the promise of our nation’s democracy.”
In a speech on the house floor, Pressley explained, “Some have questioned the maturity of our youth. I don’t. 16 and 17-year-olds today possess a wisdom and maturity defined by today’s challenges, hardships, and opportunities.”
16 & 17-year-olds in my district are working to support their families. Not for enrichment or to build a resume. They are working because they have no choice.— Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (@RepPressley) March 3, 2021
They do so while attending school full-time & caring for loved ones. Their voices are needed at the ballot box. pic.twitter.com/fN67VrVKx3
U.S. House Rep Michelle Fischbach (R-MN) decried the proposed measure in a tweet where she said, “Democrats just tried to amend their so-called “election reform” bill to lower the voting age to 16. Apparently felon voting and taxpayer funding of their campaigns wasn’t enough.”
Democrats just tried to amend their so-called “election reform” bill to lower the voting age to 16. Apparently felon voting and taxpayer funding of their campaigns wasn’t enough. https://t.co/imV5dQ3o2G— Rep. Michelle Fischbach (@RepFischbach) March 3, 2021
During a Facebook Live conversation in February, Pressley said she was “shocked” that lowering the legal voting age to 16 is a “polarizing” subject of debate.
It is likely that many of the new voters would vote Democrat and provide a boost to the progressive wing of the party especially, of which Pressley is a member.
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