After the US Presidential elections there have been some calls to introduce an upper age limit for their position. Similar opinions exist about the age of Senators, Congressmen and Supreme Court judges. Others have also called for the establishment of an upper limit for voters.

Are there any countries which have actually implemented a maximum age policy in elections?

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    Only cardinals under 80 can vote in papal elections...
    – DJohnM
    Mar 9, 2017 at 3:03
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    In Norway, the upper age limit for supreme court judges is 70 years, the same as for most other government jobs. However, both the hiring process and the role of the judges is quite different from the US. As for politicians, there are no limits on age or number of re-elections.
    – Abulafia
    Mar 9, 2017 at 11:39

3 Answers 3


In the Netherlands the maximum age for mayors is 69, and one of their mayors is stepping down after reaching this limit. Beyond that I don't know of any age restrictions on running for election.

(Personal opinion) I believe that age limits in democratic elections are generally a bad idea. Its up to the voters to decide who is fit to serve, not whoever happened to be writing the laws at the time.

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    Arguably, at a certain age — or, more specifically, at a certain physical/mental health condition — a person can no longer cast their vote independently, which opens a broad range of possible abuses and manipulation. Since there's no gauge for "health" or "being independent", they try to gauge for "age", at least. Mar 9, 2017 at 3:13
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    @bytebuster - while not wholly false, the obvious - and correct - rebuttal is Heinlein's critique of minimal voting age in Starship Troopers: "I have never been able to see how a thirty-year-old moron can vote more wisely than a fifteen-year-old genius". Basically, age is a very very poor proxy of anything meaningful.
    – user4012
    Mar 9, 2017 at 6:29
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    @user4012, it's because there is some difference between voting wisely and the voting independently. But yes, there seems to be no good and simple proxy for a census. Mar 9, 2017 at 7:04
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    Unfortunately this is not a real answer to the question; the question is about elections, and mayors in the Netherlands are appointed, not elected. In 2005, a proposed change in the constitution was very close to passing, but did not get a 2/3 majority in the Dutch senate ("Nacht van Van Thijn").
    – user12886
    Mar 9, 2017 at 12:43

In Pennsylvania in the United States (US), there is an upper age limit for judges (75; used to be 70). In Vermont, the maximum age is 90. Pennsylvania has initial elections for state Supreme Court judges followed by retention elections every ten years. The maximum age forces retirement early, before the retention election.

There may be maximum ages for some positions in the US, but not any of the federal elections.

Maximum ages for voters would be blocked in the US without a constitutional amendment. All citizens eighteen and over can vote unless relieved by due process of law (after criminal acts). For federal positions would also be problematic, although the precedents would be less clear.


Uganda has an upper age limit for presidential qualifications.

A person is not qualified for election as President unless that person is—

(a) a citizen of Uganda by birth;

(b) not less than thirty-five years and not more than seventy-five years of age


Chapter 102, Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, 1995

At the moment, it is being debated on whether it should be removed: Inside plan to remove Uganda presidential age limit.


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