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Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Voting at 16

The Isle of Man is to become the first part of the British Isles to lower the voting age from 18 to 16. Manx politicians hope the move will encourage more youngsters to get involved in politics. The amendment means that around 2,000 16- and 17-year-olds will be able to vote in elections.

Where the Isle of Man leads Britain should follow.
It's an interesting conundrum - give 16 year olds the vote and you get more voters but you actually will probably end up with a lower percentage turnout because of the extra people you have enfranchised - particularly when the novelty wears out. That said I'm fully in favour of 16 year olds getting the vote - strikes me as fundamentally fair given the repsonsibility they have to the state and how we treat 16 year olds as adults in most regards.
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