NBC’s highly popular and Emmy winning weekly political drama, The West Wing covered in depth the issue of lowering the voting age in tonight’s episode. A class of middle school students were touring the White House and get engaged in a discussion with a high level advisor to the President about lowering the voting age.
The students make a very articulate and credible argument in favor of lowering the voting age and in the end win over the staffer. The staffer gets one of the students into the President’s press conference, and he asks the President about lowering the voting age. The President, played by Martin Sheen, responds with “Allowing children to vote is…worthy of consideration.”
It is a fantastic victory for youth rights to even have this issue mentioned on such a popular show as The West Wing, but the victory is more outstanding considering the very good job the show did in advocating for lowering the voting age, and in the end, the approval of the President and a high ranking White House staffer. Not only were these arguments made, but these arguments came directly from NYRA. Many lines in the show were directly quoted from NYRA’s Top Ten Reasons to Lower the Voting Age document. Put in the mouths of the students, many of NYRA’s best arguments were articulated beautifully on the TV show, and millions of people listened to them and for the first time, considered them.