22 November 2022 - Calls to lower voting age to 16 in New Zealand
New Zealand court rules voting age of 18 is discriminatory
New Zealand’s highest court ruled on Monday that the country’s current voting age of 18 was discriminatory, forcing parliament to discuss whether it should be lowered.
The case, which has been going through the courts since 2020, was bought by advocacy group Make It 16, which wants the age lowered to include 16 and 17 year olds.
New Zealand’s supreme court has forced voting age on to agenda, exposing absurd arguments for status quo
Henry Cooke (The Guardian, 22/11/2022)
Names can be deceiving. While many Kiwis might assume that our supreme court is in fact supreme – able to strike down laws and change the country – it is not. Like the UK, parliament in New Zealand is supreme. Even if the courts decide parliament’s laws disagree with the Bill of Rights Act, the democratic body is able to tell the court to stick to complex tax cases, thanks. Nothing handcuffs parliament, nothing is above it.
Parliament now has to justify keeping the voting age at 18 – it’s a hard argument to make
Nick Munn (The Conversation, 22/11/2022)
This week’s Supreme Court judgment on lowering New Zealand’s legal voting age has, at times, been interpreted as some kind of mandate for change. That’s not quite the case, but the court’s ruling does at least make change a possibility.
Lowering voting age to 16 likely to fail in Parliament
Anna Whyte (Stuff, 21/11/2022)
The Government will introduce a proposal to Parliament to lower the voting age to 16, the Prime Minister has announced, in light of the Supreme Court judgment.
However, it is unlikely to pass, with ACT and National already coming out against lowering the voting age, with a proposal to change the Electoral Act needing at least 75% support of Parliament.