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New York City Council aims to allow lawful permanent residents to vote: NPR


New York City Councilor Ydanis Rodriguez speaks at a rally Thursday on the steps of City Hall ahead of a council vote to allow legal permanent residents to vote in elections to choose mayor, councilors municipal officials and other municipal office holders.

Marie Altaffer / AP


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Marie Altaffer / AP

New York City Council aims to allow lawful permanent residents to vote: NPR

New York City Councilor Ydanis Rodriguez speaks at a rally Thursday on the steps of City Hall ahead of a council vote to allow legal permanent residents to vote in elections to choose mayor, councilors municipal officials and other municipal office holders.

Marie Altaffer / AP

The New York City Council on Thursday approved legislation that would extend voting rights to hundreds of thousands of legal non-citizens, allowing a once-deprived segment of Big Apple taxpayers to participate in the local democratic process.

The measure was easily approved by city council with the backing of a number of advocacy groups, who claim lawful permanent residents of New York have the right to influence who runs the city and how their taxes are. spent.

If the bill passes and survives legal challenges, New York City would become the largest jurisdiction in the United States to allow voting for non-citizens.

Non-citizens would remain banned from voting in federal and state elections.

New York is home to a massive immigrant population. Legal permanent residents of voting age represent some 900,000 of the city’s 7 million adult residents. The legislation would open the door for hundreds of thousands of these residents to vote in local elections, including the nationally significant mayoral race.

The Voting Rights Bill applies to non-national residents who have resided in the city for at least 30 days, including green card holders, DACA holders and those who are legally entitled to work in the country.

The decision was brought forward without the help or support of Mayor Bill de Blasio, who questioned the legality of the measure but nonetheless said he would not veto the council’s decision.

Despite its relatively easy victory on the coast to the council in the Democratic stronghold, the legislation is likely to face legal challenges, especially from Republicans, who have led efforts across the country to enact new restrictions on voters. .

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