A 14-Year-Old Is Legit Running For Governor In Vermont

If we told you that a 14-year-old boy was campaigning for an election, you’d probably assume said election was for a spot on his class council. Not this time—14-year-old Ethan Sonneborn is hoping to be the next governor of Vermont.

According to the Associated Press, Sonneborn claims he has “practical progressive ideas,” and decided to run after the Charlottesville rally in Virginia—clearly, he wanted to make a change. He found out that the state’s constitution doesn’t actually have an age requirement for candidates (oops?), and started putting together his campaign.



“My message transcends age,” Sonneborn said in a video.

And he didn’t come to play. CNN says that the focus of his campaign is on gun control, healthcare reform, economic development and education. It’s clear that he’s a precocious teenager, but it’s probably unlikely he’ll get much farther than the primary—the Associated Press reports that he managed to raise $1,700 for his campaign, which is no doubt impressive for a teen, but won’t cover the expenses needed for a successful statewide campaign.

The Cook Political Report rates the Vermont governor race as “solid Republican,” and it looks like incumbent governor Phil Scott has it in the bag. Vox, however, points out that Scott’s ratings have decreased among Republican voters since this spring, when he signed some bills that strengthened gun control laws.

Within the Democratic primary, Sonneborn is up against three other candidates, one of whom, Christine Hallquist, would be America’s first transgender governor if elected.

Despite his tough competition, Sonneborn is hopeful. “I think if I can get one person who wasn’t involved in the political process before involved now, then my campaign will have been a success,” he said.

He also says that even if he lost, he would continue to be involved in politics in some way. One of his main goals is to get more young people engaged in politics, and whether or not you think a kid who can’t drive yet should be in office or not, you have to admire his determination.