Today we celebrate the anniversary of the 26th Amendment (ratified July 1, 1971). Here’s what you need to know:

WHAT IT DOES

The 26th Amendment lowered the voting age from 21 to 18 years old.

WHY IT WAS ADDED

With the draft during the Vietnam War came increasing pressure to lower the voting age. If they were old enough to go to war, young people argued, they were old enough to choose the leaders with the power to send them to war.

Congress proposed the 26th Amendment on March 23, 1971. The amendment was ratified by three-fourths of the states on July 1, 1971. It was the most quickly ratified amendment.

26th admendment