Hyattsville Will Allow Non-Citizens to Vote
On December 6th The Prince George’s Sentinel reported that the Hyattsville City Council unanimously voted to allow non-citizens to vote in their city elections. Hyattsville is one of the first cities in Maryland to allow non-citizens to vote.
“The mayor and city council amend the city charter to change the qualifications for registering as a voter in city elections so that (1) being a citizen of the United States is no longer a requirement to be a voter or a member of the board of elections and (2) residency for 30 days is sufficient provided the individual does not claim the right and vote elsewhere in the United States, or has not been found by a Court to be unable to communicate a desire to vote,” the amendment motion reads.
The City Council and Mayor are going to amend the city charter in order to allow non-citizens to vote. This legislation was debated for over two years by the city council and opposed by many residents but the City Council members who backed it pushed it through anyway. Residents of Hyattsville believed that the bill should be changed to a referendum in order to let the residents of Hyattsville decide. However, the City Council needed this bill to become a law in order to gain votes in the upcoming 2017 elections so they did not consider a referendum.
The motion makers acknowledged that there were many concerned citizens who opposed this bill but they did not seem to care.
At the same time, Councilman Joseph Solomon, who was also a motion-maker, said he has fielded complaints and worries from his residents as well, but said he believes this is the right step for the city.
“I don’t want them to feel left out or somehow their voice is diminished. That was something I continued to hear inside the chamber and folks who reached out to me,” Solomon said explaining that several veterans believe this motion works against their fight to keep foreign ideas out of the country. “This is building on the work that they have started. I think they fought for America to be a free country…and people move here because they recognize that and so its not then our position to say we’re going to slam the door shut and lock the rest of the world out of the opportunity for prosperity.”
Councilman Solomon is correct that people move here because America is a free country that provides immigrants with many opportunities. However, allowing non-citizens to vote perpetuates illegal immigration and deters immigrants from pursuing citizenship. Not allowing non-citizens to vote does not slam the door shut or lock out immigrants from coming to the United States. It simply gives them incentive to become citizens and immigrate legally.
If the left actually wanted immigrants to move to America and live a prosperous life full of opportunity, they would help them become naturalized citizens. The left passes laws such as this one to create the illusion that they are helping American immigrants. However, laws such as these provide nothing but a quick solution to the broad problem of illegal immigration. If an immigrant can come to Maryland, vote, and obtain a drivers license, why would they need to become a citizen? More importantly, why would they need to enter the country legally? Illegal immigration is a major problem in this country and laws like these perpetuate illegal immigration instead of provide solutions.
The left is more worried about gaining votes rather than fixing the major problems that plague Maryland and the United States.