26th amendment Facts

26th amendment Facts
The Twenty-sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution gave American citizens eighteen-years-old and older the right to vote. Before the amendment was passed the federal voting age was twenty-one. The Twenty-sixth Amendment was proposed by the United States Congress on March 23, 1971 and ratified on July 1, 1971, making it the fastest an amendment passed through the process. The amendment passed with overwhelming bipartisan support by both parties in both houses of Congress before it was sent to the state legislatures, where it needed to pass three-fourths of the state legislatures by a simple majority for it to become law. On July 1, 1971, North Carolina was the thirty-eighth state to pass the amendment, which made it law. The origins of the Twenty-sixth Amendment can be traced to the counter-culture and youth movements of the late 1960s, where many youth said "Old enough to fight, old enough to vote."
Interesting 26th amendment Facts:
Congress passed, and President Nixon signed a law in 1970 that was part of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 that lowered the voting age to eighteen.
The states of Oregon and Texas successfully sued to overturn the voting law in court in what is known as Oregon v. Mitchell.
The amendment is one of the more simple and plainly worded of all the amendments. Section 1 states: The right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age.
Democratic Senator Ted Kennedy from Massachusetts was one of the major proponents of the legislation in Congress, arguing that since men that age could be drafted, then they should also be allowed to vote.
Although President Nixon was generally quite conservative and was often opposed to Kennedy, the two agreed on most of the principles of the Twenty-sixth Amendment.
Different presidents had proposed lowering the voter age long before 1971. President Roosevelt proposed lowering the age in 1941 and President Eisenhower did so in 1954, but little political momentum was gained.
Other than the Fourteenth Amendment, which theoretically gave black males the right to vote, and the Nineteenth Amendment, giving women the right to vote, most voting requirement laws are determined by each individual state. The states of Kentucky and Georgia, which were overwhelmingly conservative Democrat states at the time, voted to lower the voting age to eighteen in 1943 and 1955 respectively.
Jennings Randolph, a Democrat congressman from West Virginia, was the first lawmaker to introduced legislation lowering the voting age to eighteen. He did so in 1942.
The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in Oregon v. Mitchell that Congress couldn't prevent eighteen-year-olds from voting in federal elections, but could do so in state elections. This political conundrum was one of the major factors behind the momentum to pass the Twenty-sixth Amendment.


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