New York became this December 9 in the first large city in the United States to approve a law proposal that will allow foreigners living in the city to vote for the first time in local elections, a right that has been claimed For years for the Pro Immigrant organizations.
In a historic vote that was held at the headquarters of the Town Hall, the city's municipal council approved by 33 votes in favor, 14 against and 2 abstentions the so-called proposed "Intro 1867", after a long debate in which representatives of Both parties expressed their reluctance to some of the most controversial aspects of the initiative.
"Today we are starting to write a new chapter in the history of New York (...) giving our immigrants the power to go to the polls," said Councilman Yanis Rodríguez, the main driver of the proposal, before dedicating his Vote "To all immigrants who come to this city to do only one thing, to work hard. Yes it can be".
It is estimated that about 800,000 immigrants with permanent legal residence, work permit or beneficiaries of the DACA plan known as "Dreamers" may benefit from this measure that will allow them to participate in the elections for mayor, councilors and other public officials as the defender of the People or the account prosecutor.
It will be necessary to wait until 2023 so that immigrants can start voting, since a period is now opened so that the Election Board presents a plan to establish the registration of voters and the requirements to be able to go to the polls. According to the current text, it will be necessary for immigrants to have resided at least 30 days in the city to vote.
The measure, which does not include the right to vote in the state or federal elections, has the rejection of the opposition, which has already threatened to challenge it in the courts. "Someone who has been living 30 days will be able to decide on the course of our city or how we manage our taxes," said Republican Councilman, Joseph Borelli.
The outgoing mayor of the city, Bill de Blasio, has expressed its reserves to the proposal claiming that there are only the state authorities that have the authority to legislate on this matter, although it has made it clear that it will not veto the new law before transferring the command The next mayor, Eric Adams, who has shown his support for the "Intro 1867" proposal.
From organizations such as the New York Immigration Coalition celebrated the approval of the new law after years struggling to expand the right to vote to foreign residents who, as they recall, raise their children in public schools in the city and contribute to the economy Local with your taxes.
"This legislation will mark the beginning of the greatest granting of voting rights of New Yorkers in more than a century and marks a bold step in the struggle to protect and expand democracy," said executive director, Murad Awaedeh. "New York becomes a model to follow for other cities and counties in the country," he added.
The Great Apple joins another dozen small municipalities in the country that allow voting in their local elections to people who do not have US citizenship, including nine cities of the state of Maryland and two from Vermont, while since 2018 in San Francisco They can only participate in the elections for the school board.Date Of Update: 10 December 2021, 11:53