I've been advocating a lower voting age for some time, but it always seemed a theoretical exercise. Residents of San Francisco on Tuesday have a chance to make it a reality if they support Proposition F, which would lower the voting age for local elections to 16.
It has a good chance of passing: The only recent poll shows that a slim plurality favor the measure.
San Francisco would be the third U.S. city to lower the voting age to 16, after two Maryland suburbs, Takoma Park and Hyattsville, took the plunge in 2013 and 2015, respectively. As the first large city to take this step, San Francisco would encourage others to consider following.
It's even possible to imagine a full state going along, meaning that 16-year-olds could vote in national elections, too, since states are in charge of the electoral system. The 26th Amendment to the Constitution only says that the minimum voting age cannot be set higher than 18; governments are free to go lower than that.