The Voting Rights of Senior Citizens: Should All Votes Count the Same?

Ethical Theory and Moral Practice:1-17 (forthcoming)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

In 1970, Stewart advocated disenfranchising everyone reaching retirement age or age 70, whichever was earlier. The question of whether senior citizens should be disenfranchised has recently come to the fore due to votes on issues such as Brexit and climate change. Indeed, there is a growing literature which argues that we should increase the voting power of non-senior citizens relative to senior citizens, for reasons having to do with intergenerational justice. Thus, it seems that there are reasons of justice to disenfranchise senior citizens, or at least to grant them a lower voting weight than non-senior citizens. In this paper, we investigate whether there are democratic reasons to do so. To answer this question, we turn to the boundary problem in democratic theory, i.e., the question of who should be included in democratic decision-making. Two prominent solutions, and a more recent one, are particularly relevant: the all-affected principle, the all-subjected principle, and the relational egalitarian principle. When it comes to the all-affected principle and the all-subjected principle, we argue that there is reason to grant most senior citizens a lower voting weight than most non-senior citizens in most decisions. Whether that is the case on the relational egalitarian principle depends on how people relate to each other in society. Indeed, it is sometimes in accordance with the relational egalitarian view to grant senior citizens a greater voting weight than non-senior citizens.

Similar books and articles

Radical Democratic Inclusion: Why We Should Lower the Voting Age to 12.Martin O'Neill - 2022 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 91:185-212.
Suitable properties for any electronic voting system.Jean-Luc Koning & Didier Dubois - 2006 - Artificial Intelligence and Law 14 (4):251-260.
The Perversity of Weighted Voting.Daniel Wodak - forthcoming - Journal of Politics.
Voting and Democracy.Thomas Christiano - 1995 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 25 (3):395 - 414.
Electoral Quid Pro Quo: A Defence of Barter Markets in Votes.Alexandru Volacu - 2019 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 36 (5):769-784.
Voting Procedures.Michael Dummett - 1984 - Oxford University Press UK.
Plural voting and political equality: A thought experiment in democratic theory.Trevor Latimer - 2018 - European Journal of Political Theory 17 (1):1474885115591344.

Analytics

Added to PP
2023-09-15

Downloads
197 (#91,286)

6 months
197 (#10,656)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author Profiles

Andreas Bengtson
Aarhus University
Andreas Albertsen
Aarhus University

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Moral dimensions: permissibility, meaning, blame.Thomas Scanlon - 2008 - Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
What is the point of equality.Elizabeth Anderson - 1999 - Ethics 109 (2):287-337.
The Morality of Freedom.Joseph Raz - 1986 - Philosophy 63 (243):119-122.
The morality of freedom.J. Raz - 1988 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 178 (1):108-109.
Democratic Theory and Border Coercion.Arash Abizadeh - 2008 - Political Theory 36 (1):37-65.

View all 43 references / Add more references