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State parliament launches lowering of voting age

Wahlen in Berlin

Berlin's House of Representatives is moving to lower the voting age to 16 for state parliamentary elections.

The Berlin Senate passed a corresponding bill on September 12. The CDU and SPD had anchored a lowering of the voting age for the House of Representatives in their coalition agreement.

"People can form an opinion at 16 just as easily as at 18."

In the debate about this at the plenary session in the state parliament on Thursday, Interior Senator Iris Spranger spoke of an important new regulation for more participation in the elections to the House of Representatives. Younger people are just as affected by state political decisions. By lowering the voting age, they would have a greater right of co-determination, the SPD politician argued. She rejected criticism that minors are not mature enough to do so. "People can form an opinion at 16 just as easily as at 18."

Around 50,000 young people soon to be allowed to vote

About 50,000 young people in Berlin who would be allowed to vote in the future would be affected, Spranger said. "I hope the rules will be implemented this year." A two-thirds majority is needed for the necessary constitutional amendment. The Left Party and the Green Party have already signaled their support.

Author: dpa
Publication date: 22 September 2023
Last updated: 22 September 2023

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