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Young Korean stars vote for first time

By Lee Jung-youn

Published : April 10, 2024 - 14:41

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Members of Billlie pose for photos after voting in the general election on April 5. (Mystic Story) Members of Billlie pose for photos after voting in the general election on April 5. (Mystic Story)

For this month's legislative election that selects the members of the National Assembly, several young celebrities have gained their right to vote for the first time.

The election law of South Korea was amended in 2020, allowing all Koreans aged 18 and above to vote. That means any Korean born before April 11, 2006, can participate in the nation's 22nd legislative election. For those born between June 3, 2004, and April 11, 2006, this year’s election is the first election in their lifetime.

Among K-pop singers who were expected to exercise their first voting rights include Jang Wonyoung and Liz of girl group IVE. Wonyoung was born in August 2004, and Liz was born in November 2004. Nmixx's Bae and StayC's J, both born in December 2004, also have the opportunity to vote for the first time. Siyoon from Billlie and Yunah and Minju from the recently debuted group Illit are also on the electoral list for the first time.

Among boy bands, members eligible to cast their first votes include Jeongwoo of Treasure, Jinwoo of Ghost9, Jiho and Siyun of Ampers&one, Wooju of Blitzers, Junhyeok, Sungjun, and Hwi of The New Six and Seongbin, Seokjoon of 82major, and Jinhyuk and Siyun from Nowadays, who debuted last week.

Among actors, Kim Su-an, who starred in the movie "Train to Busan," and Lee Re, who appeared in the dramas "Hellbound" and "Castaway Diva," cast their first votes, according to their management companies.

Meanwhile, Minji of New Jeans starred in the National Election Commission’s advertisement to encourage younger generations to vote. The advertisement was broadcast on radio, subway, buses, and other platforms.

According to the voter turnout report of the 21st general election in April 2020, turnout was the highest among voters in their 60s, at 80 percent, followed by those in their 70s and 50s with 78.5 percent and 71.2 percent, respectively. The turnout for the 18-year-olds, who gained voting rights for the first time in 2020, was relatively high at 67.4 percent. However, the turnout for people in their 20s and 30s was relatively low, recording 58.7 percent and 57.1 percent, respectively.

Members of Trendz pose for photos after casting a vote for the 22nd general election, April 5. (GF Entertainment) Members of Trendz pose for photos after casting a vote for the 22nd general election, April 5. (GF Entertainment)
Members of 82Major pose for photos after casting a vote for the 22nd general election, April 5. (GREAT M Entertainment) Members of 82Major pose for photos after casting a vote for the 22nd general election, April 5. (GREAT M Entertainment)