The New York Post reports that “new legislation is being pushed that would give illegal aliens the right to vote” in certain New York City Elections. The proposal was recently discussed at a Black and Latino Legislative Caucus event in Albany and according to the Post, which is winning support from the city’s black and Hispanic activists. Fortunately New York Conservatives oppose this misguided attempt to further boost Democratic Party enrollment. New York State Conservative Party Chairman Mike Long threw cold water on the idea:
This is outrageous . . . American Citizens have the right to determine the destiny of towns, villages, cities, states and the country.
The proposal would allow New York City’s estimated 1.3 million non-citizen residents, about 500,000 of whom are undocumented, to vote in New York City’s 2017 elections for mayor, comptroller, public advocate, borough president and City Council.
Chairman Long has it exactly right. This is just another very bad, old idea that left-wing Liberal/Progressive extremists won’t let stay dead.
During the last century this dumb idea was put to rest. By 1900, nearly one-half of the states and territories had some experience with voting by aliens. But then, anti-immigration feeling ran very high and States started to end the practice of aliens voting. According to Wikipedia, Non-citizen voting in elections became extinct when Arkansas became the last state to ban it in 1926. In 1931, political scientist Leon Aylsworth noted: “For the first time in over a hundred years, a national election was held in 1928 in which no alien in any state had the right to cast a vote for a candidate for any office – national, state, or local.”
At least until the era of Barack Obama. According to a study by professors at Old Dominion University and George Mason University, approximately 6.4 percent of non-citizens voted in the 2008 presidential election. The figure for the 2010 midterm elections was 2.2 percent. The Obama administration is fighting state-led efforts to ensure that only American citizens are electing our leaders. The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) — a small federal agency that exists primarily to assist the states in creating the federal form citizens used to register to vote by mail, stopped Arizona and Kansas from requiring people to verify their citizenship before voting.
This dispute went all the way to the Supreme Court. In the 2013 case, Arizona v. Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, a divided Court said that Arizona could not implement such a requirement unless and until the EAC agreed to change the instructions for use of the federal form to include the Arizona requirements. The majority opinion in that case, written by Justice Antonin Scalia, stipulated that if the EAC refused Arizona’s request to accommodate the proof-of-citizenship requirement, the state could sue the EAC and establish in court that “a mere oath will not suffice to effectuate its citizenship requirement and that the EAC is therefore under a non-discretionary duty to include Arizona’s concrete evidence requirement on the Federal Form.”