26th Amendment- KC

  • Jennings Randolph

    Jennings Randolph
    Jennings Randolph, democratic congressman, introduces federal legislation to lower the voting age. The West Virginian congressman tried to introduce similar legislature 11 times. He had a faith in America's youth. He once said, "They possess a great social conscience, are perplexed by the injustices in the world and are anxious to rectify those ills."
  • Lowering of Draft Age

    Lowering of Draft Age
    FDR lowered the draft age from age 21 to age 18. This was during WWII when the US needed as many able bodied men as they could get in the army. The lowering of the draft age caused this common slogan of the youth voting rights movement, "Old enough to fight, old enough to vote."
  • Georgia Lowers Voting Age

    Georgia Lowers Voting Age
    Georgia was the first state to lower it's minimum voting age at the state and local level.
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower

    Dwight D. Eisenhower
    Dwight D. Eisenhower was the 1st president to publicly voice his support for a constitutional amendment lowering the minimum voting age. He said this during his state of the union address, “For years our citizens between the ages of 18 and 21 have, in time of peril, been summoned to fight for America. They should participate in the political process that produces this fateful summons.”
  • Youth Voting Activists

    Youth Voting Activists
    The California Teachers Association Student Association passed a resolution supporting an 18 year-old voting age and mustering the support of the NEA-Student Program and the NEA Representative Assembly's thousands of nationwide members.
  • NEA Campaign

    NEA Campaign
    NEA initiated its campaign, Project 18, teaming with organizations like YMCA, AFL-CIO, and the NAACP. They created the Youth Franchise Coalition to lobby for a constitutional amendment.
  • Voting Rights Act of 1965

    Voting Rights Act of 1965
    Congress passed an extension of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. It contained a provision that lowered voting age to 18 in federal, state, and local elections. Though he signed it into law Richard Nixon had this to say, “Although I strongly favor the 18-year-old vote,” Nixon continued, “I believe–along with most of the Nation’s leading constitutional scholars–that Congress has no power to enact it by simple statute, but rather it requires a constitutional amendment.”
  • Oregon v Mitchell

    Oregon v Mitchell
    The supreme court decided to uphold the 1970 extension of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The supreme court decided that congress didn’t have right to regulate the minimum age of state and local elections, but only federal elections. The justices were seriously divided. Four thought congress had the right to decide minimum voting age at any level and four thought congress didn’t have the right to decide minimum voting age at any elections and only states had right to set voter qualifications.
  • Proposed to Senate

    Proposed to Senate
    The 26th was proposed and passed in the senate. It passed unanimously at 94 to 0.
  • House of Representatives

    House of Representatives
    The House of Representatives passed the 26th amendment and it went to states for ratification.The vote was 401 to 19 for the 26th Amendment.
  • Amendment Ratified

    Amendment Ratified
    The 26th amendment was ratified on July 1st, 1971. It was the shortest period of time for any amendment in US history to be ratified, around four months total. Richard Nixon signed it into law on July 5th, 1971. North Carolina and Ohio were the last states to approve the amendment before official ratification took effect .
  • 18 to 24 Voter Turn Out

    18 to 24 Voter Turn Out
    55% of voters age 18-24 turned out for the 1972 election.Voter turnout steadily dropped after that. It went down to 36% in the 1988 election.Voter turnout rose to 49% in the 2008 election, the second highest percentage in US history.