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Kids call Boetticher on voting age hypocrisy

The Local · 1 Sep 2011, 10:53

Published: 01 Sep 2011 10:53 GMT+02:00

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In the letter, children from class 12c at the Ludwig-Meyn high school in Uetersen, near Hamburg, reminded Boetticher of a "heated discussion" he was involved in six months ago.

"You defended the position of your party: that a 16-year-old is so far behind an adult in both maturity and education that he or she cannot make responsible political judgements," the letter said.

The teenagers said the revelations about Boetticher's affair with a 16-year-old "put the whole discussion in a new light."

"You fell in love with the intelligent and enriching political opinions of someone in our age group," they said. They are now calling on Boetticher to become a supporter of their campaign to lower the voting age in Schleswig-Holstein to 16.

The 40-year-old Boetticher has made no response to the letter. A spokesman said he was ill and is currently not making public statements.

The scandal surrounding Boetticher's brief affair with a 16-year-old cost him the CDU party leadership in Schleswig-Holstein, as well as the candidacy for the state premiership in next May's election.

The couple met on Facebook early in 2010 and began an affair which Boetticher broke off in attempt to protect his career after a few months. In his tearful resignation speech on August 14, Boetticher said it had been a serious love affair.

He said he was stepping down to prevent his party from political damage, "but in particular to protect beloved people in my private life."

Story continues below…

Boetticher said the girl, a member of the CDU's youth organization Junge Union, had caught his attention with her "very intelligent" comments on his Facebook updates.

He said she was "intellectually very mature for her age," and he was able to "communicate with her on the same level."

The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

11:36 September 1, 2011 by LiberalGuy
very good point
12:01 September 1, 2011 by Ludinwolf
OMG... facepalm. how embarassing this situation. I guess he should just find something else to do. Put shame on himself by acting upon a pleasure that he couldnt ever keep up with... or would he propose to this teenager girl?now pay a high price for a little pleasure.
15:36 September 1, 2011 by derExDeutsche
Yes, because 16 year-olds are the wisest, most feeling, most compassionate of the population (aka enough brainwaing by liberal educators and Mtv, peer pressure, and Brian De Palma, to vote to;

'Obama for President of the World'
15:46 September 1, 2011 by HansT
Frankly, I think this rather confirms the concept of a ban on 16-year-olds voting. If anything could better demonstrate the relatively poor decision-making skills of mid-teens than developing a relationship with a 40-year-old, I'm not sure what it would be. Boetticher obviously has his own problems, but no matter how "mature" teenagers may appear, they do not have the life experience or the emotional facility to take on any number of adult responsibilities., especially the matter of voting which can have a detrimental effect on millions of other people.
16:19 September 1, 2011 by LiberalGuy
I agree that 16 year olds probably aren't mature enough to vote, but it is very hypocritical to come against 16 year olds voting, but then start a romantic relationship (sexual or not) with one. But then again I think many 30 year olds don't have the maturity to make an informed decision at the ballot box, but they do have a right to make one
16:50 September 1, 2011 by nemo999
Maybe he is as mature as a 16 year-old?
17:10 September 1, 2011 by vonSchwerin
Yes, it was hypocritical of him AND 16-year-old are too young to vote.

In the Kaiserreich, the voting age was 25.
17:13 September 1, 2011 by twisted
For the 16 years old girl to become HIS lover (a man twice her age) proves that certainly she was too immature to make a rational decision. I will agree that hormones rage at age 16 (mine sure did), but that doesn't translate into good judgment, that's for sure. 18 is the minimum and it should stay there. Should also be the legal age for drinking, smoking and public service.
19:29 September 1, 2011 by Englishted
Here is a good lesson for the 16 year olds ,don't trust politicians what they promise and what they do are poles apart.
06:54 September 2, 2011 by romber58
Yes Englishted

A good lesson not only for 16 year olds but also for all the commentators before you moralizing on here about immaturity while presumably falling for the same lies every election.Maybe 16 year olds just havent become so "comfortably numb" in their thinking yet.
09:08 September 2, 2011 by wood artist
@der Ex

I fail to see what this has to do with Obama, or how he has any responsibility for things that happen inside Germany.

09:49 September 2, 2011 by chicagolive
@ wood artist

Yea he is probably one of those Michelle Bachmann lovers who if you don't believe God did it some how its President Obamas fought, and yes I said President people should show some respect for the office and the person in it.
10:21 September 2, 2011 by derExDeutsche
@ chicagolive

so it IS true, the Obama Campaign 2012 slogan isn't 'Hope and Change' ... its 'Michelle Bachmann is CRAZY and she believes in God'

Yawn... good luck with that. You'll need 16 year olds voting in that tired song and dance. Its the economy, dummies, not what religion someone is. Atheists such as myself vote after all, too.
10:29 September 2, 2011 by storymann
HansT, I agree with you.
19:32 September 3, 2011 by iseedaftpeople
Personally, I prefer an informed, consciencious 16-year-old voter to any dim-witted 25-year-old knucklehead who uses his vote to support racism and xenophobia, and whose only argument when you ask him is "because I hate those {insert strong racial expletive}".

I see no reason why 16-year-olds shouldn't vote. Those who don't care about politics will simply not bother casting their ballot on election day, but if you actually talk to youths that are politically inclined, and I did for some years as a spare-time youth worker, you will be astonished at how articulate they are about their political views. Maybe if youths become a new voting force, politicians will finally start taking them seriously (German Conservatives in particular admittedly would have to fear the worst - I can't exactly ever see them become a youth voting magnet).

Anyway, all that talk about maturity is just tosh. How can we rationalize that the aforementioned dim-witted racist twentysomething (who isn't a cliche I just made up - his type exists by the tens of thousands if you travel to some Eastern parts of Germany) doesn't have to prove his maturity and is given the benefit of doubt just by virtue of his age, while 16-year-olds with a strong political interest are excluded because they are "too young". It just doesn't add up.
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