Voting yes on Prop 18 means amending the state constitution to let 17-year-olds vote in primary and special elections if they will turn 18 by the next general election. That would have allowed 200,000 more Californians to vote in 2016 and 2018, according to the Public Policy Institute of California.
Washington, D.C. and 18 states already practice this.
Voting no on Prop 18 means the current law would remain so that Californians can vote only if they are 18 years old at the time of any election.
Supporters: Advocates like the California Democratic Party and the California League of Conservation Voters argue that passing the measure would boost engagement among young people and motivate them to become lifelong voters. Alex Padilla, who as secretary of state is the chief election officer of California, has been raising money to promote Prop 18 (as well as Props 16 and 17).
Critics: Concerned about high school students being able to vote on tax increases that appear on primary and special election ballots, the conservative Jarvis Taxpayers Association opposes the measure.
“They are almost all still living at home and under the strong influence of their parents,” said the Election Integrity Project California. “This is not conducive to independent thought and voting without undue pressure from their immediate superiors.”