LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A 16-year-old Faulkner County girl is entering the world of politics.
Despite her age, and in hopes of sparking change, Allison Dougan has registered for the District 40 state house seat.
“At 18 we can can go overseas and give our lives. At 18 we can pay taxes. At 18 we can vote. Why can’t we represent Arkansas?,” she asks.
Don’t let the bow that sits on top of her head fool you.
“16-years-old currently. I will be 18-years-old a month after the election,” she explains. “I feel like as American citizens our voices aren’t being listened to anymore.”
On Monday, she registered as an Independent, despite not meeting the age requirement of 21.
“By challenging the age, I’m advocating that the youth has a voice. We are not all just dumb kids,” she continues.
Dougan says she graduated from high school at 13 and is now taking an online pre-law program.
And while she doesn’t know her fate of actually making it on the ballot, she hopes she can bring about change.
“I’m hoping to be an inspiration to the youth so that they acknowledge the fact that yes they are young and yes they don’t have 40 years of life experience or 30 years of political experience, but their voices matter” she says.
More than a dozen states have the age of running for public office set at 18, including our neighboring state of Louisiana.
As for Allison, the state can legally take up a fight to stop her from running, but as of right now, she is still registered.