The last time voting age was lowered in America was in 1971 when the 26th amendment was put in place mainly because 18-year-old citizens were fighting in Vietnam and it didn’t seem fair that those brave soldiers couldn’t vote for their national leaders. While the legal voting age is protested till today and demanded to be lowered in America, 16-year-old Brazilian citizens have had the right to vote since 1988. Many other countries have granted people as young as 16 years old the right to vote such as Austria, Nicaragua, and Argentina. In Indonesia and Sudan, 17-year-old citizens can legally vote. Scottish citizens on the other hand who are 16 and 17-year-old were granted the right to vote recently in 2014.
While people argue that granting younger citizens the right to vote is irrational. Reasoning that citizens at that age are not knowledgeable enough to participate in such an important decision and that they should mature before taking that responsibility. Even though I don’t agree with theses statements as younger generations are more knowledgeable about politics these days more than ever. I do think that lowering the voting age and adding more eligible voters will most likely not increase the voter turnout in the next elections for many reasons. One would be that even though in the 2014 elections younger generations were about 53% of eligible voters only 36 million voted and the number continued to decrease.
photo source: http://www.pewresearch.org
While most of us are fairly familiar with America’s voting system and process, we don’t really know much about elections in other countries. So, for your entertainment and educational purposes, here are 15 facts about elections around the world.