Opinion polls have suggested that teenage voters are more likely to support the country remaining in the EU rather than leaving.
“That is why we have chosen to stick with the tried and tested proven general election franchise.
Mr Penrose said it would be wrong to change the GE franchise for a single poll
MPs rejected a Lords amendment to the European Union Referendum Bill
Given the understandable sensitivity surrounding the EU referendum, making such a fundamental change to the franchise for this vote alone would inevitably and perhaps justifiably lead to accusations of trying to fix the franchise in favour of either the ‘
“Even at 18, there are things young people cannot do – they must wait until they are 21 to adopt a child, supervise a learner driver or to drive a bus.”
Labour’s shadow Europe minister Pat McFadden said the referendum – due to be held before the end of 2017 – will be a “once in a generation choice, perhaps a once in a lifetime choice” about the country’s future direction.
Calling for the voting age to be lowered, he said: “Our contention is very simple, it is that the young people of this country deserve a say in the decision which will chart our country’s future.”
Pat McFadden said the referendum will be a ‘once in a generation choice’
Jayne Adye, of the anti-Brussels campaign group Get Britain Out, said: “The House of Commons has rightly rejected this cynical attempt by Europhile peers in the House of Lords to skew the referendum in their favour.”