'Same arguments' to stop teens voting used to deny women right to vote

Vote at 16 debate

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

A Labour MP has claimed that the arguments against giving teenagers the right to vote were also used in "times gone by" against women.

Jim McMahon, the MP for Oldham West and Royton, made the comments during a Westminster Hall debate, in which he called for the voting age to be lowered to 16.

"We have heard a lot of arguments, and they are the exact same arguments that prevented the vote being given to women, the working classes and 18-year-old's in the past," the politician said.

"How are they going to know what they are voting for? Surely if we extend the franchise to women it will bring down democracy?".

He continued: "Just hear the arguments that were used in times gone by, and hear the arguments that are being used today to deny 16 and 17-year-old's the right to vote. There's a common thread."

The politician added that he believed democracy would be "enriched" by giving teenagers a say.

"We are setting the bar much higher for 16 and 17-year-olds," he claimed. "There is no age test when it comes to knowledge and participation."

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