Republicans Push to Block Federal Funding for States That Allow Non-Citizens to Vote

Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) is leading a group of Republicans in Congress that will sponsor legislation to ban federal funding for states or localities that permit foreigners to vote in U.S. elections.

The new law known as the Protecting Democracy by Preventing Foreign Citizens From Voting Act, was created after several liberal San Francisco and New York municipalities decided to provide non-citizens the right to vote in local elections

“It’s ridiculous that states are allowing foreign citizens to vote. However, if states and localities do let those who are not U.S. citizens to vote in elections, they shouldn’t get U.S. citizen taxpayer money,” Rubio said.

GOP Sens. James Lankford of Oklahoma, Steve Daines of Montana, John Kennedy of Louisiana, Rick Scott of Florida and Thom Tillis of North Carolina, are cosponsors of the new act. Meanwhile, Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.), plans to launch companion legislation in the House. 

“Voting in this country is a right that should solely be limited to American citizens. Allowing non-citizens or illegal immigrants to vote, even if only in state or local elections, gives foreign nationals influence on some of the most important decisions impacting our families, our rights, and our representation in government,” Duncan stated. 

Rubio’s bill would ban federal funds from being sent to any state or municipality that permits foreign citizens to vote in federal, state, or local elections. It also requires all states and local governments to declare that they don’t allow foreign citizens to vote when federal funding is applied.

At the conclusion of the 2018 Georgia governor’s election, the issue of non-citizen voter came to a boil when Democrat Stacey Abrams suggested that she hoped would be elected as Georgia’s governor, by both documented and undocumented immigrant voters.

From eventual winner Brian Kemp to President Donald Trump, Republicans claimed she was calling for foreigners voting. Abrams refuted it and claimed that she meant illegal aliens were part of the constituency she intended to represent, and not looking for ineligible voters.

Within two years, however, several liberal communities began to allow non-citizens vote in local elections. A 1994 congressionally-passed law prohibits non-citizens from voting in elections for federal officeholders.

The cities of Montpelier and Winooski have approved allowing noncitizens to vote in municipal elections for mayor, council, and school board.

San Francisco, nine Maryland cities, and two Massachusetts communities have all approved noncitizen voter approval, though the latter require state legislative approval. Los Angeles, New York City, Chicago and New York City are all moving forward with plans for foreign citizens to vote in U.S. local elections.

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