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PHOENIX -- The Arizona House has passed a bill removing the age limit of 45 for serving in the state militia, opening the force designed for emergencies but never used in modern memory to older Arizonans.

Rep. Carl Seel says his bill brings the age provision in the Arizona Constitution into modern times. But the parts barring lawmakers, elected officials, preachers, the totally blind, idiots and lunatics and ``persons convicted of infamous crimes,'' will remain in the enabling legislation Seel sponsored.

The full House approved the bill on a 36-21 vote Tuesday. It now goes to the Senate.

The militia provision was included in the Arizona Constitution when it was adopted in 1910. The measure names all able-bodied citizens ages 18 to 45 as members. Seel's bill allows older Arizonans to volunteer.

Associated Press,

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