CONCORD, N.H. (CBS) – At 19 years old, Cassandra Levesque will soon take her seat in the New Hampshire Legislature, the oldest legislature in the country when it comes to the age of its lawmakers.
“It feels really great. I can bring more of a voice of the youth in the New Hampshire House by bringing up laws or just talking to people,” Levesque told WBZ-TV.
She’s already ahead of the game.
WBZ first interviewed Levesque two years ago when, for a Girl Scout project, she campaigned to end child marriage in New Hampshire. When the bill didn’t pass she did the next best thing, she ran for office herself.
“I know I can make bills that will affect a lot of people,” she said. That includes campaigning on, and getting ready to re-introduce a bill to change the legal age of marriage in New Hampshire to 18, though last year the Legislature did change the age to 16.
A Democrat, she beat out four other candidates in Barrington, New Hampshire, a town she says is purple in its politics. She thinks youth had everything to do with it.
“Helping people and other representatives understand, ‘Hey, this is what the youth wants, this is what we all want to do to make New Hampshire better,” she said.
Did the campaign seem daunting at 19 years old? Levesque simply said she knew she could do it. The average age in the New Hampshire Legislature is 66 years old, but now the number of lawmakers under the age of 40 has doubled.
Cassandra Levesque feels her campaign was part of a movement.
“It’s really empowering and exciting to see what’s next for the youth movement, this wave of youth going through politics and being heard,” she told WBZ.
She wants to take on issues affecting women and children, even safe drinking water, and now she can vote on the laws herself.
“I can make a change with that one bill,” she said. And even hoping to change some perspective when she is sworn into office on December 5.