Sunday, July 17, 2016

Voting Age in Japan

Previously the voting age in Japan was 20 years old.  In last week's election for the first time, 18 and 19 year olds were allowed to vote. According to a survey released this week by the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry, voter turn out was 51.17 percent among 18 year olds and 39.66 percent among 19 year olds. Turnout for both age groups combined was 45.45 percent.  The survey included data from all 47 prefectures in Japan.  Turn out for those in their 20's has been less than 40 percent since 1992.  Overall turnout for this election was 54.70 percent. Many of my students this week told me that they had voted in the election.  I asked them why they thought only about half of those eligible to vote actually do and the response was that people aren't interested in politics, especially young people.  

I'm interested in hearing what it is like in other countries.  Do most people vote in elections in the country you live in?


  1. Hi Pamela ,very interesting,thankyou ,hope you have a lovely day ....

  2. Parliamentary voting turnout for Sweden is usually about 85%.

  3. Interesting. I'm not sure what the numbers are in the US. My perception is that most young people, unless they are in college, are not interested in politics and don't think their vote makes a difference anyway. Many adults feel the same way. I say, if you are not interested and don't take the time to educate yourself on what the candidates want to do, then stay home. This is a new opinion for me...the current election has changed my mind to think this way.
    xx, Carol

  4. When I was in my early 30's an old farmer asked me if I voted, I said no. He said to me, 'Voting is a privilege, you should vote.' Since that time I have voted.
    I believe even if what or who I wanted doesn't get voted in, still my voice was heard and that is a privilege.

  5. Voting here is compulsory, if you do not vote you get fined. Some people then do what is called a donkey vote, where they don't fill in the form properly and is therefore null and void. Others vote for silly groups like the Pirate Party!! Was hard this last election as I was not impressed with either of the main parties, too much time muck raking and not enough on what they were going to do for the country.