Primary elections are considered to be as important as the November General elections. Allowing a group of citizens to participate in the November General elections only and not in the Primary elections for any reason is sometimes considered as denying them their rights (Kimberlee, 2002). This, particularly, is more concerning when the reason is that they have not qualified to participate in the election because they are a few months younger. The youth, at the moment, is being considered as an important part of any election (Kimberlee, 2002). This is because they represent the future of any nation and they should be allowed to participate in any election, whether it’s the Primary election or the November General elections so long as they are close to the age of qualification. This paper will look at H.J.R. 31 and the decision on whether Texas Legislators should pass it or not.
The difference between a 17-year-old youth who is a few months from attaining the age of 18 years is not that significant (Caren, 2007). Such a youth has a sound mind, and he or she can make the same decisions an 18-year-old would make. The same applies when it comes to participating in an election. It’s absurd to claim that the decisions of a youth who is some months away from being a qualified voter would change the entire process of an election (Caren, 2007). Despite my decision to back H.J.R. 31, some individuals in the Texas state would oppose this amendment. Some party members who consider themselves inferior would oppose this decision because they believe that they don’t have the support of the youth. Members who are applying for the nomination in the Primary elections cannot endorse this amendment if they feel that they are not common among the youth.
Over the past few years, the youth turnout in elections has been low according to records (Wolfinger and Steven, 1980). It’s clear that the situation has reached a point whereby the most of the youth feel discouraged to participate in elections. Some of them have developed the notion that only old people, particularly those above 30 years old are supposed to take part in voting. If Texas Legislators pass this amendment, it would be a great idea (Kimberlee, 2002). This is because the youth would be encouraged to participate in elections, both the Primary and the General elections. However, emphasis must be made among the young people because party members can corrupt most of them. A youth member who has attained the age of 17 years can make an informed decision in any election situation and therefore, H.J.R. 31 is a good idea.
If I were in the Texas Legislature, I would vote yes on the amendment. This is because I support the decision to allow 17-year-olds to participate in the Primary elections. As stated earlier in this paper, these individuals can make informed decisions. Further, I feel that it’s unfair to allow any person to participate in only half of activity. If 18-year-olds are allowed to take part in the General elections, then 17-year-olds who are willing to participate in the Primary elections should be given the freedom to do so (Kimberlee, 2002). After they attain the age of 18 years in November, they will participate in the General Election with a more understanding of what is happening around them rather than doing so blindly (Wolfinger and Steven, 1980).
Even if this amendment is going to be passed, I feel that it will take a longer time than expected. Most citizens, particularly the middle-aged citizens who are 35 years and above feel that the decisions of most youths are not sound and they should be represented by their elders (Wolfinger and Steven, 1980). As a result, the amendment is likely going to result to a lot of debates that will take more time. However, if this amendment is passed, I would vote for it as a citizen. If the youth are included in the Primary election, they will give such an election more meaning, and party members would be careful on what to promise the citizens because the youth would be watching them. I, therefore, support H.J.R. 31 amendment due to some of the reasons explained in the paper.
- Caren, Neal. “Big city, big turnout? Electoral participation in American cities.” Journal of Urban Affairs 29.1 (2007).
- Kimberlee, Richard H. “Why don’t British young people vote at general elections?” Journal of youth studies 5.1 (2002).
- Wolfinger, Raymond E., and Steven J. Rosenstone. Who votes? Vol. 22. Yale University Press, 1980.