New York Supreme Court Overrules Democrats, Strikes Down Law Allowing Non-Citizens to Vote

The New York State Supreme Court has overruled Democrat lawmakers by striking down a law that allowed non-citizens to vote in local elections.

The “Our City, Our Vote” bill was approved by the New York City Council in December and was signed into law in January.

The law allowed non-citizen legal residents, including those with green cards, to vote in municipal elections starting in 2023 but not in federal elections.

Republican lawmakers quickly filed suit in Staten Island Supreme Court to block the measure and limit the voter rolls to only citizens.

City Council minority leader Joseph Borelli said: “Today’s decision validates those of us who can read the plain English words of our state constitution and state statutes: Noncitizen voting in New York is illegal, and shame on those who thought they could skirt the law for political gain.

“Opposition to this measure was bipartisan and cut across countless neighborhood and ethnic lines, yet progressives chose to ignore both our constitution and public sentiment in order to suit their aims.

“I commend the court in recognizing reality and reminding New York’s professional protestor class that the rule of law matters.”

New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams said:

“Months ago, after years of it being denied, New York City restored the right to vote in municipal elections regardless of immigration status with legislation I was proud to co-sponsor, an essential step towards building a true democracy in our city.

“Today, the state Supreme Court seeks to once again revoke that right and disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of permanent New York City residents from having a voice in the decisions that shape our city – and choosing the leaders who make those decisions.

“Federal citizenship should not be a prerequisite to participate in local democracy – as recently as 2002, noncitizens voted in school board elections.

“In a city like New York, this court ruling will silence the people and communities that are often most impacted by the decisions of those in power.

“Days after the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Act was signed in New York State in opposition to a rising tide of voter disenfranchisement across the country, the court’s ruling undercuts that mission and belies New York’s role as a supposed progressive beacon – it must be immediately appealed.

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“New York is a city of immigrants, and to advance our city, we must advance our vote.”

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By David Hawkins

David Hawkins is a writer who specializes in political commentary and world affairs. He's been writing professionally since 2014.

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