UK Elects Youngest Lawmaker Since 1667

20-year-old hasn't finished her politics degree yet
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 8, 2015 5:22 AM CDT
UK Elects Youngest Lawmaker Since 1667
Paisley and Renfrewshire South constituency winner Mhairi Black of the Scottish National Party (SNP) and Labour's Douglas Alexander react at the Lagoon Leisure Centre in Paisley, Scotland.   (David Cheskin/PA via AP)

After yesterday's election, the UK now has a lawmaker too young to get into a bar in the US, let alone Congress. Mhairi Black, the Scottish National Party's candidate for a district near Glasgow, is 20 years old, and her victory makes her the youngest member of Parliament since the 13-year-old Duke of Albemarle in 1667, reports the BBC. The University of Glasgow politics student—whose dissertation is due at the end of this month—was elected as part of a huge SNP landslide in Scotland, the Guardian reports. She defeated Labour Party incumbent Douglas Alexander, the party's campaign chief, by a comfortable margin.

Black, who had a part-time job in a pizza joint until a few months ago, says age was not an issue during her campaign in the Paisley and Renfrewshire South district. "They see I am passionate about what I'm talking about," she told the Daily Record before the election. "It's the ideas they are responding to and the fact they are being engaged with." Britain changed the law in 2006 to lower the minimum age for candidates from 21 to 18, the BBC notes. In the US, the age limit is 25 for members of the House and 30 for senators. Across Scotland, the SNP all but obliterated its rivals, taking 56 out of 59 seats, the Telegraph reports. (More British elections stories.)

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