North Dakota Sets Age Limit for Congressional Candidates

( – Candidates who are seeking a seat in North Dakota’s state legislature will have to be at a certain age to qualify to run, thanks to a new measure that has been approved by voters in the state.

Voters in the Peace Garden State approved a motion – 60% for and 40% against – to impose an age limit on candidates who want to contend for a seat in the state’s legislature. Under the new rules, congressional candidates who will turn 81 on the 31st of December within the year that their term ends are effectively barred from running for office. The measure will essentially involve making an amendment in North Dakota’s constitution.

As it stands, however, the newly agreed-upon rule does not affect any current member of the state legislature, as John Hoeven, a Republican who represents Fargo, is the oldest state lawmaker at 67 years old.

Republican state Senator Jared Hendrix was the primary force responsible for pushing the bill forward, and said that at least part of the intent behind the measure was to spark a debate on the issue of whether it is possible for older politicians to hold office and be in public service effectively.

Hedrix, who is 41, also successfully spearheaded a campaign in 2022 to impose term limits for North Dakota’s governor and other state legislators.

Observers caution, however, that the new measure may be challenged in court, given the fact that a prior Supreme Court decision in 1995 ruled that state governments do not have the authority to change the requirements for a person to run for public office outside of what the U.S. constitution allows. Under the Constitution, there is a minimum age for a person to run for the Lower and Upper Houses – 25 years old and 30 years old, respectively. However, the Constitution has no age limit and allows candidates to hold office as long as they keep getting elected to the position.

However, the issue of a public servant’s age has become one of the most important factors voters will be looking at this coming election. Interestingly enough, President Joe Biden and former president Donald Trump – will both be past the 81 year old mark at the end of the next presidential term.

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