RNC Suing 2 Vermont Cities for Giving Voting Rights to Noncitizens

The Republican National Committee and the Vermont GOP are suing two cities in the Green Mountain State over new charters allowing noncitizens to vote in municipal elections.

The state Senate in May approved changes to charters in the cities of Montpelier and Winooski.

The RNC said the charters violate the state constitution which requires Vermont voters to be U.S. citizens.

“Democrats are trying to dismantle the integrity of our elections,” RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said in a statement Tuesday. “In addition to attacking widely supported safeguards like voter ID, Democrats also want foreign citizens to vote in American elections.

“Republicans are fighting back on this far-left assault against election integrity — unlike radical Democrats, we believe that our elections should be decided solely by American citizens. This is a matter of principle, and we will fight in all 50 states to ensure this remains the case.”

The suit also raises important concerns about how the laws will be implemented, and whether noncitizens will end up on the same voter registration lists used for state-level and federal elections.

Montpelier is Vermont’s capital city. Winooski, with a 2010 population of little more than 7,000, has one of the highest concentrations of new Americans and immigrants in Vermont.

“I believe if someone wishes to be able to vote they should be a citizen,” Vermont state Sen. Brian Collamore told Fox News in May.

“The Montpelier bill allows what is defined as a legal resident of the United States to be able to vote in city elections. … If someone is here on a permanent basis, why would he or she not want to participate in the process to become a citizen?”

GOP Gov. Phil Scott vetoed the legislation in June, citing “inconsistency in election policy” across the state.

“Allowing a highly variable town-by-town approach to municipal voting creates inconsistency in election policy, as well as separate and unequal classes of residents potentially eligible to vote on local issues,” Scott said in a letter to legislators.

Scott’s veto was overridden by the Senate, with Democrats getting just enough votes to clear the two-thirds majority needed.

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