Non-Citizens Can Now Vote?

Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

It is now law for non-U.S. citizens to vote in Washington, D.C. Local elections, according to the City Council.

Despite receiving criticism from Republicans, the City Council passed the Local Resident Voting Rights Amendment Act. The bill allows eligible non-U.S. citizens who have resided in Washington, D.C., for more than 30 days to vote in an election.

Before the bill became law, Congress had 30 days to push back on the legislation, effectively blocking it.

However, according to reporting by WAMU, while House Republicans pushed to block the bill, the clock ran out on the upper chamber, meaning the review period ended without a formal objection from the Senate, making the legislation the law.

The legislation was first introduced by City Council member Charles Allen, who touted other progress Washington, D.C., has made in securing the right to vote for more.

Allen asserted that the legislation “is in line with D.C. values” and the council’s “history of expanding the right to vote.”

On October 6, 2022, before the vote, Allen made a plea to fellow members of the City Council, noting that immigrants “of all statuses” contribute, participate, and “care about our community in our city.”

As soon as the City Council passed the law, Republicans pursued squashing it.

The terms of the legislation meant non-U.S. citizens older than 18, residing in D.C., and not claiming biting residence anywhere else in the country or a U.S. territory, could vote in the local elections.

Chairman of the House Oversight Committee James Comer (R-KY.) introduced a resolution to block the bill, calling it “an attack on the foundation of this republic.”