Should the ballot box be 18-plus? Maryland advocates are pressing for a lower voting age in local elections

National movement?

According to the National League of Cities, Maryland, 17 other states and Washington, D.C., allow 17-year-olds to vote in statewide primary elections, if they will turn 18 by the general election.

Maryland, neighboring D.C., Virginia and 13 other states permit 16-year-olds to preregister to vote, according to the league of cities.

In California, elected officials in Oakland and Berkeley passed measures to allow those 16 and older to vote in school board elections. Young people are already voting in Berkeley, but it’s scheduled to happen in Oakland next year.

In June, Vermont’s legislature overrode a governor’s veto to allow 16- and 17-year-olds to vote in local elections in the town of Brattleboro.

The New Jersey Institute for Social Justice published a report Aug. 31 advocating for 16- and 17-year-olds to vote in local elections.

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