Source: Janet Levy
Elections in the U.S. are plagued by problems of integrity. At the very basic level, the country has failed to maintain accurate and current voter rolls. With those on the Left opposed to voter IDs, there’s no way of verifying genuine eligibility. Big Tech sways contests with enhanced social media coverage or censorship, and, more recently, there has been reason to suspect foreign interference. Then there are structural defects that allow manipulation — the vulnerability of mail-in ballots to vote harvesting, the extension of voting periods weeks before and following official election dates, and the questionable last-minute changes of election law. The list could go on and on.
But now a new threat, perhaps more foreboding than the ones listed, looms over American elections – a new bill that gives non-citizens the right to vote in municipal elections in New York City. The bill has been passed into law, making NYC the 15th among towns and cities with local laws permitting non-citizen voting. Non-citizen suffrage is permitted in 11 municipalities in Maryland and two in Vermont, while San Francisco permits non-citizens to vote in school board elections.
Non-citizens often vote by subterfuge, under the cover of provisions that make it illegal to require an ID for voting. If the New York law allowing aliens to vote goes unchallenged, non-citizens can shed even that fig leaf of deceit. Those who merely hold green cards or temporary work visas will be able to vote openly. Even those who have been lawful permanent residents of the city for 30 days and those with work authorizations will be able to select city officials such as the mayor, city council members, the comptroller, borough presidents, and more. Incoming NYC Mayor Eric Adams supports the bill, but according to Republican City Councilman Joseph Borelli, a legal challenge is likely.
The current population of NYC is about 8.5 million. In 2018, it counted 4.6 million registered voters. The 800,000 non-citizens who will be added to the rolls in 2023 will mean a 17% increase in potential voters. With migrant voters favoring the Democrats, this could spur similar measures in Democrat strongholds. The implications for national sovereignty are grave indeed: NYC could well be the critical test case to push for allowing non-citizen residents to eventually vote in state and presidential elections.
That push could begin with the extension of non-citizen voting in many cities across the country, especially in Democrat districts that support the inflow of migrants. The Biden administration has left the border uncontrolled and endorsed weak enforcement of laws against illegal aliens. The stated purpose of such legislation is to “enfranchise” those “who pay taxes and are part of local communities.” But since when does a 30-day stint in a foreign country without the privilege of voting qualify as being “disenfranchised?” In effect, non-citizen suffrage blurs the distinction between citizens and non-citizens; and voting rights, however limited, could be flaunted as a legal claim to citizenship or for hastening the process of obtaining citizenship.
Thankfully, there are a few stumbling blocks to the implementation of the NYC law. The New York State Constitution designates that “every citizen shall be entitled to vote at every election…” So it still remains to be established that non-citizens can summarily be treated as citizens through local laws. Besides, New York state’s Municipal Home Rule Law and the city’s own charter provide for mandatory referendums if certain changes are made to election regulations. There is hope, then, that voters will speak for sovereignty.
Even so, there are many legal complexities, ones the Dems are intent on exploiting to the hilt. NYC has a formal policy of being a “sanctuary” city — a jurisdiction that does not comply with detainer requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for deportation even when prior arrests and criminal charges have been filed. The new legislation takes the City That Never Sleeps further and faster down the road to lawlessness. Why, under the circumstances, would a non-citizen, despite his illegal status, bother at all to become a legitimate citizen of the U.S.?
Another complication is that federal law forbids non-citizens from voting in federal elections, a crime punishable with a fine, up to one year in prison, deportation, and ineligibility for visas and admission to the U.S. But illegals, who have voted in favor of the Democrats over Republicans in U.S. elections, have done so unchecked in states that allow non-citizens to obtain driving licenses. At the time of license renewal, their names are added to the voter rolls without any attempt to verify their citizenship.
Federal law has also complicated matters by making no pronouncements on state and local elections. This was done in the well-meaning spirit of federalism; however, by not explicitly forbidding non-citizens from voting in any election in the U.S., the field has been left open to attacks of the sort the Democrats, unless countered, are bound to pursue. So far, all 50 states have barred non-citizens from participating in state elections. But local elections are a different game. Cities in 11 states allow illegals to vote at the local level.
This actually encourages illegals. As Rep Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) says, “Extending voting rights to those who are not lawfully present in the United States acts like another incentive for foreign nationals to come to the United States illegally and stay.” The Democrats, particularly those on the Left, with their loose sense of boundaries — in matters of gender, sexual orientation, or even citizenship — continue to play this dangerous game of eroding deep-rooted ideas of nationhood.
In 2018, House Republicans passed a non-binding resolution opposing voting by non-citizens in U.S. elections, including in cities where this has been allowed. In a 279-72, vote, there were 49 Democrats who joined Republicans to declare “that allowing illegal immigrants the right to vote devalues the franchise and diminishes the voting power of United States citizens.” This vote took place after San Francisco opened voter registration for school board elections to illegal aliens.
And earlier this year, the Senate defeated S.1, nicknamed “The Corrupt Politicians Act,” which Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) describes as “monstrous” and one that “provides that illegal immigrants who are registered to vote, even though it’s against the law for them to vote, will face no legal liability because they will be automatically registered to vote.” A typically devious Democrat move, in violation of the Constitution. The bill contained provisions prohibiting the correction of voter rolls to remove illegals or the deceased. It also allowed felons to vote, eliminated election integrity laws and voter ID, and mandated ballot harvesting.
Despite such fightbacks, the Left will not cease to hack away at the foundations of American democracy. As Reince Priebus, former chief of staff to President Donald Trump and chairman of the Republican National Committee, tweeted, “The far-left continues to make a mockery of our nation’s democratic process. Voting in U.S. elections should remain a right reserved for American citizens over the age of 18.”
The New York bill perverts the meaning of President Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, in which he described our republic as a “government of the people, by the people, and for the people.” Bestowing voting privileges reserved for our countrymen to non-citizens will sabotage our sovereignty and hasten the descent of the great American experiment into the garbage pit of history.