politics

Bill submitted to lower voting age to 18

17 Comments

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party and opposition parties on Thursday submitted a joint bill to be enacted during the current Diet session to reform the Public Office Election Laws so that the legal voting age will be lowered from 20 to 18.

Members from six political parties first submitted a bill to the House of Representatives (lower house) last year but it was shelved after the lower house was dissolved for the December election.

A government spokesman said passage of the bill will allow young people to participate in the political process and have their voices heard. If approved, the proposed change would add some 2.4 million new voters to the electorate, granting them the right to participate in elections as soon as the summer of 2016, when a vote for the Diet's upper house will be held.

© Japan Today

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

17 Comments
Login to comment

Seijin no Hi and the age of majority will be 18? So Japan will no longer call 18 year old a child? And they can get driver licenses? They can drink too?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

passage of the bill will allow young people to participate in the political process and have their voices heard. If approved, the proposed change would add some 2.4 million new voters to the electorate, granting them the right to participate in elections as soon as the summer of 2016, when a vote for the Diet’s upper house will be held.

It would only be half of the 2.4 million. They would be better off making voting compulsory for the plus 20 adults.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Even if this bill passes, I highly doubt that they're going to vote... Even if they did, it would most likely be influenced by twitter...

If they really wanted to up the amount of voters they should try improving the educational system first so people understand why they vote and have an opinion about it.

Of course, they could always just give away free umaibō and everyone would come flocking.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Now let's make the age of being a minor anyone under 18 rather than the ridiculous age of 20.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

As Jellois questions above: will they vote. Seems as if only Soka Gakkai voters get out to the polls in large numbers anymore. So if the new 18-20 year old group does go to the polls on their own thinking, there might be a few changes in the outcome of some elections. The older group is frustrated with election outcomes and thus is reluctant to vote, the middle-aged voters seem to care less and the younger group, 20 and older, just aren't interested unless a famous name is running for something or other.

Because they are either fresh out of high school, are going to college or have just entered the work force, the 18-20 year olds should have some knowledge about the candidates and thus should be able to make some good choices. Hopefully ...

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

And what's that going to achieve! Young people have ZERO interest in politics in Japan!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

So basically a bunch of young people are going to vote for a bunch of old people.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Most 18 year-olds in this country are just too immature to vote. I do not mean to offend young people. It's just that young people here tend to grow more slowly than in other countries, which I think is perfectly fine. There is no real need for them to grow fast, is there? If you compare young people here and their equivalants in your country (if you are from abroad), you'll see my point. Just because other major countries have been doing it, it doesn't mean this country has to copy it.

No one mentions it, but I think one big reason the government and the LDP are proposing to lower the voting age at this time is that they think that young people today are easy to manipulate and more conservative in their thinking than they used to be and thus are no longer a big threat to the LDP and its government. And they are probably right. There is going to be a good chance they will get most of their votes.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

They might get an extra 100 voters then...!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Good point Yoshimi. LDP can lure these new young voters & might get more votes. But only IF they vote. Most young people here (japanese) dont seem to care about politics nor world events. In the US, it is common for young adults to openly speak amonst peers about polital issues. But thats kinda like a taboo here, right? So how could they be inclined to vote in the 1st place?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Next, let's make it legal to publish the names and photos of 18-year-old murder suspects.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

And they can get driver licenses?

They can get motorcycle licences at 16 and 18 for drivers licences now.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The next step in the democratic process is to give individuals flash voter identification cards when they turn 16 years of age that plug into a USB slot. If you want to give your vote on a bill that is on the procedural shelf, just plug your card into any laptop and vote and BIG POSTER your thoughts on the bill.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The voting age should be lowered to 18 because they are the ones that will be sent off to die in US lead foreign wars. They should have a voice in how they will die.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Hoping to read more comments on this one...

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Taught hundreds of senior high school troopers, fairly knowlegeable, and engaged them in mild politic discussions....they are completely clueless on the topic. They are lucky to recall who the PM is. And the J-Gov parties ask to entice them in voting...good luck with that. My experience sees most 18ers in Japan sit quite comfortably with their daily customary habital lives without pressure on dealing with adult issues. Don't get me wrong here, I welcome the idea. It might be the thing these youngters need to at least grow up in these "living the fast lane" times.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If they really wanted to up the amount of voters they should try improving the educational system first so people understand why they vote and have an opinion about it

Or they could just make voting compulsory

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites