Argentina

Argentina Lowers Voting Age to 16

Skeptics say move is for president to court youth vote

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Argentina has lowered its voting age to 16 from 18, a change that could help politically ailing President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner court the youth vote ahead of 2013 midterm elections.

Dozens of opposition members of the lower house of Congress walked out of the rancorous late-night session just before the measure won final approval by a vote of 131 to 2.

Kirchner, who polls well among younger voters, has not ruled out a bid by her supporters to change the constitution to allow her to run for a third term in 2015. Legions of youthful activists have joined the "Campora" movement, known for its rowdy demonstrations in favour of Kirchner's heterodox policies.