Posted by Austin Plier on June 28, 2016
A bill that would allow 17-year-olds to vote in primary elections (if they will be 18 by the date of the general election) is headed to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie's desk after passing the state Senate. Allowing 17 year-olds to vote in primary elections is a simple, common sense expansion of suffrage that helps young voters form voting as a habit early on in life.
New Jersey would join twenty other states that have adopted such a law. You can view a map of which states have adopted this practice as well as learn more about the merits of the policy on our innovations page. Primary voting at age 17 has garnered bi-partisan support, most recently when it passed New Mexico's state legislature and was signed by Republican Governor Susana Martinez. Governor Christie should sign the bill because it is the fair thing to do, and has the potential to increase voter turnout in both the short and long term.