16 Year Olds Will Be Able to Vote in Norway

Talking to Dagsavisen, SV parliamentarian Snorre Valen will promote a constitutional proposal to change the voting age. Valen said 16-year-olds can be hold responsible for criminal acts, then they have the right to choose political and religious standpoint, the right to abortion and the right to consent or refuse to receive health care.

Valen also believes that 16 years of voting means more democracy in practice. He notes that he is tired of “maturity-argument” that is used by opponents and believes that lessons learned from the trial in the last municipal elections suggests that we are ready. 

– I think the responsibility provides precisely maturity. With 16 years of voting, more people will be learning to show their ideas in a well-organized, voice-based democracy. Now we have conducted an experiment showing that 16-year-olds use the voting to a greater extent than the 18-year-olds, says Valentine.

In local election of 2011, 20 Norwegian municipalities had participated in a pilot project which allowed the voting of 16 – and 17-years.

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