Youngest voter in Palo Alto turns 18 on Election Day

Gunn senior to vote in his first election

Gunn High School senior Aaron Schultz will celebrate his 18th birthday on Nov. 8 this year, making him Palo Alto's youngest voter in this year's election. Because California citizens are allowed to register before their 18th birthday, Schultz did so over the summer.

According to Schultz, he did not discover until recently that he would be able to vote in the election.

"For awhile I thought Nov. 8 could not possibly be the first Tuesday in November," Schultz said, referring to when Election Day is held (the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November). "One day I wanted to know what Election Day would be, and I realized it was actually my birthday. It was unexpected."

While most of his time is spent participating in sports, band and robotics, Schultz is taking time to follow the presidential race in an effort to be an informed voter.

"This presidential race seems pretty ridiculous. I find it odd how the majority of the campaigning seems to be about smearing your opponent rather than focusing on your own pros," Schultz said.

"I am trying to keep up with politics more now because I had not been following it much in the past few years, and since I was in eighth grade for the last election I do not have much to compare this one to."

In order to keep up to date with the election issues, Schultz said he is reading online news articles from sources like the Washington Post, CNN and the San Jose Mercury News. Schultz has also been watching parts of the presidential debates.

While he said he has not been paying as much attention to local races for school board and city council as he thinks he should, he does plan to vote further down the ballot.

"I think everybody has a duty to vote. If you want to have an opinion on how the country is run then you need to participate in your opportunity to influence it," Schultz said.

"I would vote in the first election I was eligible for, but I definitely think this one is more special to me because it is also on my 18th birthday. It is one of my first adult rights I will get to exercise."

Many of his classmates at Gunn will not be old enough to vote in this year's election but Schultz is looking forward to having his say. He plans to mark the occasion by going to cast his ballot at his local polling station with a friend rather than voting by mail.


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16 people like this
Posted by happy news
a resident of Palo Verde
on Nov 7, 2016 at 6:04 pm

A great kid. Glad to have him as a voting citizen.
It's good to hear positive stories about our young people.
Best wishes for your future, Aaron!

2 people like this
Posted by Congratulations Aaron!!
a resident of College Terrace
on Nov 7, 2016 at 6:31 pm

[Post removed.]

6 people like this
Posted by rick taran
a resident of Gunn High School
on Nov 7, 2016 at 7:09 pm

So proud of my nephew, Aaron. His grandfather would be proud of him as well.

His grandmother certainly is. And his parents and brothers.
Someday, Aaron will be running for high office himself. And I predict he'll win. Because he knows how to do it right.

10 people like this
Posted by Go For It!
a resident of College Terrace
on Nov 7, 2016 at 8:22 pm

My 18th birthday was also on a presidential election day. But at that time the voting age was 21.

Happy day, Aaron!

8 people like this
Posted by Anon
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Nov 8, 2016 at 7:54 am

Congratulations Aaron! have a remarkable day!

12 people like this
Posted by sequoiadean
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 8, 2016 at 11:07 am

sequoiadean is a registered user.

Congratulations on voting Aaron! My son turned 18 on election day in 2012, and voted on his birthday that year too.

7 people like this
Posted by Native to the BAY
a resident of Crescent Park
on Nov 8, 2016 at 11:10 am

How about our oldest voter, voting for Hillary???!!!

11 people like this
Posted by Proud Mom!
a resident of Palo Verde
on Nov 8, 2016 at 11:16 am

My twins turned 18 yesterday and proudly voted! They were thrilled when they found out they could vote this year and registered as soon as they could. :0)

10 people like this
Posted by KCCY
a resident of another community
on Nov 8, 2016 at 11:18 am

KCCY is a registered user.

My son turns 18 today as well and he's looking forward to going to the polls today. Am glad that kids like him and Aaron are seriously thinking about the future of their country.

1 person likes this
Posted by Awesome
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 8, 2016 at 3:49 pm

Happy Birthday Aaron. I wish everyone just turning 18 and voting could've gotten a spotlight today.

Like this comment
Posted by Oma Heide Briggs
a resident of another community
on Nov 8, 2016 at 9:56 pm

Aaron my wonderful grandson, I am so proud of you! You will become a great leader.

Like this comment
Posted by Jerry
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 8, 2016 at 11:13 pm

This is a great kid - I agree, I hope to see him on a ballot someday! I just hope he can remain humble after reading all these nice words!

Like this comment
Posted by Randy Clunge
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 9, 2016 at 12:40 pm

Randy Clunge is a registered user.

I'll tell you the same thing I told my newly minted 18 yr old wife -- either way you look at it, your vote could doom America.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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