Explain the arguments in favour of lowering the voting age

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Explain the arguments in favour of lowering the voting age (10 marks)

There is a proposed ideology that parties such as Labour are in favour of; that is, to lower the voting age to 16. Labour has included this aim in their 2010 manifesto.

 The prominent argument in favour of lowering the voting age to 16 is that it will reduce political apathy, thus increase voter turnout. There is strong evidence to suggest that the younger a person is introduced into a voting habit, the more likely they are to keep it. This thus encourages political participation and ensures a generation of politically involved people, thus promotes democracy. Voter turnout has been a downhill process since the post-war period. Reducing voting age to 16 is a good long-term method of to combat political apathy therefore. For example; when Austria gave the vote to 16/17 years old, turnout in that age group was similar to other age groups. This shows that the youth have a desire to be engaged in politics however are not given the opportunity to exercise there youthful desires.

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As well as this, it can be perceived that 18 is possibly the worst age to introduce voting. At this age, many 18 year olds consider the prospect of moving out, some continue to study higher education in university as well as being introduced to adult working life. The age of 16 however, is when the teenager is both mature and stationary. This means that they are more likely to vote at this age as there focus on other aspects of life at this current stage, is not at its most prominent as that of 18. This is likely therefore ...

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