Like Countable?

Install the App
TRY NOW

house Bill H.R. 1442

Should Young American Citizens Be Able to Pre-Register to Vote at 16?

Argument in favor

Pre-registering young people to vote will remove one of the barriers to their participating in elections. Given that youth ages 18-24 are 20 percent less likely than the general population to be registered to vote, this is a worthwhile cause.

Kodiwodi's Opinion
···
04/14/2019
I don’t see this as a partisan issue. I think it makes great sense. From 16-18 is the time when political ideologies are forming and we begin to question the world around us. We are also exposed to US and world history, philosophy, social sciences and hopefully geography and may be developing a geopolitical view of the world. I resent the comments about 16 year olds only being able to make sandwiches. Some people may raise their kids to be incompetent but I didn’t. At 16 they were in JROTC. At 16 I was already a copy editor for my high school newspaper, was actively protesting the Vietnam War and was working with the ERA movement. Being preregistered could get kids more involved in the political process and make more informed voters of them in the future. I’m very concerned about the literacy of those saying why let them vote at 16. They aren’t. They are preregistering for the vote at 18.
Like (140)
Follow
Share
IllWill's Opinion
···
04/14/2019
Some people don’t seem to have very good reading comprehension. This legislation doesn’t actually allow 16 year olds to vote, it just allows them to pre-register to vote in preparation for them to vote when they turn 18. Getting teenagers involved in the political process before they’re able to vote is absolutely necessary in order for them to make informed votes as adults. Vote yes!
Like (106)
Follow
Share
Chris's Opinion
···
04/14/2019
Better question: why would you NOT pre-register every citizen at 16?
Like (75)
Follow
Share

Argument opposed

Simply pre-registering young people to vote won’t necessarily lead to their participation in elections. It may not be worth the time, money, and effort that’d be spent on this bill if the young people who are pre-registered under this bill don’t actually cast ballots.

Colleen's Opinion
···
04/14/2019
At 16 most 16 year olds can’t even make a sandwich. This is about getting them to pre register as democrats. It kills me how the democrats want to change voting laws that have been in effect for generations just to swing an election.
Like (122)
Follow
Share
Wayne 's Opinion
···
04/14/2019
16 year olds today are not mature enough for that responsibility.
Like (60)
Follow
Share
KAG-2020's Opinion
···
04/14/2019
NO!!! YET ANOTHER DNC SCAM! OPEN BORDERS + 16 Year OLD VOTERS + END ELECTORAL COLLEGE=. Destruction of USA. DNC is a Disgrace.
Like (59)
Follow
Share

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Administration
    IntroducedFebruary 28th, 2019

What is House Bill H.R. 1442?

This bill — the Pre-Registration of Voters Everywhere (PROVE) Act — would create a national minimum age of 16 years old to pre-register to vote in federal elections, meaning they won’t need to register after they turn 18. It’d also direct the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) to give $25 million in grants to state to increase minors’ involvement in public election activities.

Impact

Youth; voters; 16- and 17-year olds; state election commissions; public election activities; federal elections; and the EAC.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 1442

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-DepthRep. Don Beyer (D-VA) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to allow young Americans to pre-register to vote in federal elections, automatically adding them to voter rolls when they turn 18.. When he introduced this bill in the 115th Congress in 2017, he said:

“This reform would encourage more voter participation among young people who will be most affected by public policy as their lives unfold. The health of our democracy requires greater engagement from its citizens, and pre-registration is a proven tool to accomplish this.”

In a letter to his Congressional colleagues seeking cosponsors for this bill in the 116th Congress, Rep. Beyer wrote:

“Research on the effects of pre-registration shows it is an effective way to increase overall voter participation and encourage civic engagement. Nothing is more important to representative government than choosing our leaders through free and fair elections.  Unfortunately, too many young people do not participate in the electoral process. In the last federal election cycle, the registration rate for 18- to 24-year-olds was 20 percent lower than the national average for all other age groups. More than 20 states and the District of Columbia already allow young people to pre-register to vote.  A study by George Mason University examined two of these states – Florida and Hawaii – and discovered strong evidence to support the positive impact pre-registration has on turnout and civic engagement. The same study showed these results were even more pronounced when election officials and school administrators worked together to develop civics curriculum aimed at improving electoral participation… Voting is habit forming.  When people vote, they are likely to vote again. The PROVE Act is an effective way to engage young people early and encourage lasting participation in elections.”

Rock the Vote is one of the organizations supporting this bill. Its president, Carolyn deWitt, said the following when this bill was introduced in the 115th Congress:

“When young people come together to participate in elections, we have the strength to change our society for the better — to speak truth to power and create a system that works for all of us. “That’s why Rock the Vote is proud to support the PROVE Act, a critical step toward helping the next generation of Americans register to vote and make their voices heard at the ballot box.”

This bill has 27 Democratic House sponsors in the 116th Congress. A Senate companion bill, sponsored by Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) with the support of 16 Democratic cosponsors, has also been introduced in the 116th Congress. Last Congress, Rep. Beyer and Sen. Duckworth each introduced this bill in their respective chambers (Rep. Beyer with 52 Democratic House cosponsors, and Sen. Duckworth with eight Democratic Senate cosponsors) and neither bill received committee votes.

This bill has the support of Rock the Vote, Common Cause, HeadCount, FairVote Action, and the Bus Project.


Of NoteYoung people are already allowed to pre-register to vote in twenty states and the District of Columbia. However, current pre-registration laws aren’t uniform: in some states, all 17-year-olds and some 16-year-olds can register. In others, some 17-year-olds and no 16-year-olds can register. And in many states, eligibility changes yearly based on the date of the next election. FairVote claims that “the lack of uniformity creates confusion and makes it harder to run effective voter registration and education programs in schools and at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).”

The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) notes that there are a range of considerations to keep in mind when implementing pre-registration, including: effects on turnout, logistics, cost, identification, locations where pre-registration can occur, what information should be protected, and how to conduct education and outreach efforts.

In a 2016 study published in the American Journal of Political Science, Duke University researchers John B. Holbein and D. Sunshine Hillygus looked at pre-registration and voting trends from 2000-2012 using Bureau of Labor Statistics Current Population Survey data, and specifically in Florida (the first state to implement pre-registration, in 1990):

  • Preregistration increases the probability that young voters will participate in elections. The probability that youth will vote increases in states with pre-registration laws by an average of two to 13 percent, depending on the model the authors used for their analysis.
  • In Florida specifically, pre-registering increased turnout by three to 14 percent.
  • The impact of pre-registration is similar for young Democrats and young Republicans. Preregistration raised voter turnout by about 7.6 percent among young Democrats and 7.4 percent among young Republicans.
  • The impact of pre-registration is similar for men and women and for white voters and minority voters. Preregistration raised voter turnout by about 7.3 percentage points among males and 7.4 percentage points among females. It raised voter turnout by about 7.6 percent among white voters and 8 percent among minorities.

In an article published in the Election Law Journal in December 2017, Anthony Fowler argued that youth pre-registration has a negligible effect on youth turnout: “On average, pre-registration appears to increase youth turnout by about two percentage points—a modest effect notably below previous estimates in the literature.”

In the 2016 federal election cycle, the registration rate for 18 to 24-year-olds was 20 percent lower than the national average for all age groups. People aged 18 to 24 are consistently the least likely age group to cast a ballot, a trend which continued in 2016.


Media:

Summary by Lorelei Yang

(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / adamkaz)

AKA

PROVE Act

Official Title

To amend the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 to require each State to implement a process under which individuals who are 16 years of age may apply to register to vote in elections for Federal office in the State, to direct the Election Assistance Commission to make grants to States to increase the involvement of minors in public election activities, and for other purposes.

    I don’t see this as a partisan issue. I think it makes great sense. From 16-18 is the time when political ideologies are forming and we begin to question the world around us. We are also exposed to US and world history, philosophy, social sciences and hopefully geography and may be developing a geopolitical view of the world. I resent the comments about 16 year olds only being able to make sandwiches. Some people may raise their kids to be incompetent but I didn’t. At 16 they were in JROTC. At 16 I was already a copy editor for my high school newspaper, was actively protesting the Vietnam War and was working with the ERA movement. Being preregistered could get kids more involved in the political process and make more informed voters of them in the future. I’m very concerned about the literacy of those saying why let them vote at 16. They aren’t. They are preregistering for the vote at 18.
    Like (140)
    Follow
    Share
    At 16 most 16 year olds can’t even make a sandwich. This is about getting them to pre register as democrats. It kills me how the democrats want to change voting laws that have been in effect for generations just to swing an election.
    Like (122)
    Follow
    Share
    Some people don’t seem to have very good reading comprehension. This legislation doesn’t actually allow 16 year olds to vote, it just allows them to pre-register to vote in preparation for them to vote when they turn 18. Getting teenagers involved in the political process before they’re able to vote is absolutely necessary in order for them to make informed votes as adults. Vote yes!
    Like (106)
    Follow
    Share
    Better question: why would you NOT pre-register every citizen at 16?
    Like (75)
    Follow
    Share
    16 year olds today are not mature enough for that responsibility.
    Like (60)
    Follow
    Share
    NO!!! YET ANOTHER DNC SCAM! OPEN BORDERS + 16 Year OLD VOTERS + END ELECTORAL COLLEGE=. Destruction of USA. DNC is a Disgrace.
    Like (59)
    Follow
    Share
    Pre registration is a fine way to encourage the civic participation of our young adults. I volunteered on my first campaign at 16. Kids are these days are smart and connected and they know a lot more about the world than most of us did at the same age. Kids are still kids, but good civic habits are best formed young.
    Like (56)
    Follow
    Share
    Congress wasting time & our money. Dems are really desperate. We lowered the drinking age to 18 once and we all know what happened to that. Maybe we should raise voting to 21.
    Like (49)
    Follow
    Share
    Anything to get Americans to vote is a great thing.
    Like (41)
    Follow
    Share
    How many different ways is Countable going to pose this Dumb Question! Not No but Hell No! 16 is a Kid! A Minor Child! The Democrats are very Esperanto right now for anything! If it’s not giving illegals the right to vote then it praying on children! I was 16 once! What my life was then was Hot cars and Hot young chicks! Knowing where I could buy beer under age! And the drinking age was 18 in most states in the 70s. 18 is very questionable let alone 16! Those are babies! Lay the F- -k off our kids! It all starts with the teachers in the education system endoctrinating our young to be little mindless lefties! This has to stop!
    Like (39)
    Follow
    Share
    Can’t legally drink a beer until 21, can’t fight for your country until 18, so why should people be able to vote at 16? Dumb idea!!
    Like (35)
    Follow
    Share
    Being able to pre-register to vote doesn’t mean a person will be able to vote at 16 (I’ve been seeing a lot of people against it because they cannot tell the difference between “pre-registering” and “registering” to vote). Since I live in California, I’m already preregistered to vote. All it means is that once I turn 18 I don’t have to worry about being registered to vote in ALL local and federal elections. It just gives younger people the option of becoming registered to vote out of the way sooner and much easier because you’re normally allowed to do the forms when getting your drivers license (a 2-for-1). It is an easier to way to mobilize the young vote - I don’t see why anyone would be against it. AND ONCE AGAIN - NO ONE WILL BE VOTING AT THE AGE OF SIXTEEN.
    Like (33)
    Follow
    Share
    Kids at age 16 still haven’t matured mentally and is a proven documented fact. This is sheer desperation on the Democrap side to boost their numbers proving they’re worried about losing in 2020. Please vote against this bill!!!
    Like (29)
    Follow
    Share
    No way! 18 years old is not enough to vote. No life experience or wisdom. The voting age should be raised to 25 so that you have to be out of the college bubble and have some time in the real world. ...This is all just proof of how specious and meritless democrat party arguments are. They can’t construct a compelling argument to persuade adults so they have to import children they have brainwashed to “win” elections. So embarrassing!
    Like (26)
    Follow
    Share
    Most adolescents at this age don’t have the maturity to make decisions on this scale. Brains are still developing until they are into their 20’s. 18 is plenty young enough. #MAGA
    Like (25)
    Follow
    Share
    Absolutely not. Teenagers hardly even know what’s going on in the world. They’re more worried about girls or boys and they are about watching the news. With that being said even my own boys tell me that at 16 they were not educated enough to make a decision on who should lead our country. I am absolutely proud that they can tell me that instead of trying to check a box just because they could. However they can tell me every single person in the bands that they like to listen to. I feel like this is a democratic ploy so that they can get kids who are indoctrinated in schools to vote democratic. I have pulled my youngest ones out of public school simply because I was tired Of teachers pushing their values on my children. Even I give my children the ability and the information to choose. The schools they were going to were not.
    Like (23)
    Follow
    Share
    Raise the voting age to 26. ObamaCare says kids can stay on the parents insurance until then because they are “children“. And we don’t need children voting do we?
    Like (23)
    Follow
    Share
    No, they aren’t mature enough. We should raise it to 21 if we do anything. I am open to letting active duty 18 year olds voting because they are serving our country. 16 year olds have no clue about reality and live sheltered lives. Only a fool would want them to vote, because they aren’t taught to form independent opinions. * If you are for a 16 year olds voting ask yourself this question: Would you let a 16 year old decide what to do with your money? And trust them to spend it wisely?
    Like (23)
    Follow
    Share
    Increasing voter participation is important for a democracy. It’s not a partisan issue, it’s a democracy issue. Stand up for democracy!
    Like (21)
    Follow
    Share
    Absolutely they should preregister makes perfect sense.
    Like (18)
    Follow
    Share
    MORE