Raising marriage age to 18 proposed

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H631, introduced Friday Jan. 14, would prohibit marriage to anyone under the age of 18.

Current law allows minors 16 years old and older to marry with parent or legal guardian’s permission. This bill would strike that provision.

As drafted and introduced, H631 “proposes to raise the age at which a person may obtain a civil marriage to 18 years of age.” 

The bill is sponsored by Reps. Carol Ode (D-Burlington), Tiffany Bluemle (D-Burlington), Mollie Burke (D/P-Brattleboro), Sara Coffey (D-Vernon), Seth Bongartz (D-Manchester), Daniel Noyes (D-Wolcott), and Lawrence Satcowitz (D-Randolph). 

The bill does not give any reason for raising the legal age of marriage. However, national anti-child marriage advocates point out that more than three-quarters of below-18 married Americans are females married to adult men, raising concerns about negative impacts to these young women. An Instyle.com article notes that “according to UNICEF, girls who marry before they’re 18 are more likely to drop out of school, and more likely to die in childbirth; their chances of living in poverty double while the chances of spousal abuse triple.”

Reasons cited in favor of under-18 marriage include (according to Instyle) pregnancy, a Romeo and Juliet-style “true love” that can’t wait, teens marrying before one of them is deployed, if one partner is serving in the military, and parental abuse.

Categories: Legislation

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12 replies »

  1. I hate this. As it is,people are getting married in their 30s and having barely any kids. As Tucker Carlson says get married too young and have too many kids. Our world needs more big families!

  2. Really, so you can have an abortion ie kill a baby as a teenager without parental consent. But you cant get married?? BLM Marxist playbook rule #1 get rid of the family.

  3. This is all pure idiocy – raise the legal age(s) to marry and to purchase cigarettes, but if you want a surgical procedure at age 12 such as an abortion or gender mutilation, well, that’s the child’s business. OK, more lunacy from the fruit loops in Montpelier.

  4. So, if this and Proposal 5 pass, young women under 18 will have a constitutional right to pursue their “personal reproductive autonomy” by getting pregnant, but it will be illegal for them to do so within a marriage? Makes about as much sense as anything these people do…

  5. Spot on Mr. Roper.

    So on one hand they are promoting prostitution or sex out of wedlock. Now they are telling you that they don’t want you to get married either.

    Bunch of godless commies. Stay the f*** out of our lives, we’re tired of it.

    • …and how does Proposition 5 play into all of this?

      Oh, what a tangled web we weave….

  6. Times have changed, if the legislature hasn’t noticed. Youth have continued to marry pre-18. In the 1920s my mother married at 17. My Dad was 27. The trend is now for women to marry later, have fewer children later if at all. Also, more to live as partners and never marry. If a couple of the legal age of consent choose to marry, they should be able to do so. It is referred to as freedom of choice. I realize not popular with all the government mandates these days. Hands off, Legislature. None of your concern or business!

  7. Good point concerning the military. A person can enlist at 18. Benefits are provided to a spouse. Consider the ramifications of denying the ability to support a person under 18.

  8. Seems like a Ridiculous and colossal waste of time! But anyone can have an abortion anytime! This seems like one more part of the “progressive” March to annihilating family structure.

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