On Monday, a court in New York invalidated the city’s noncitizen voting law, claiming it violated the state’s constitution and election laws.
The NY Supreme Court for Richmond County ruled that a law allowing noncitizen lawful permanent residents and green card holders to vote in municipal elections is unconstitutional, according to a 13-page decision obtained by Henry Rodgers of the Daily Caller.
“The NY State Constitution expressly lays the groundwork for determining that only legitimate residents are entitled to voting rights,” Judge Ralph J. Rorzio reasoned. “It is my view that by not explicitly including non-citizens in the NY State Constitution, the framers intended for non-citizens to be excluded.”
The judge agreed, finding that the New York State Constitution was violated by the Municipal Voting Law because only “citizens” may participate in elections.
The NY City Council passed a bill extending voting rights to noncitizen immigrants who reside, work, and pay taxes in the city last December. Democratic state officials and immigration advocates praised the legislation, which is scheduled to automatically enfranchise over 800,000 voters starting in 2023.
However, the law was challenged by both the GOP National Committee and state GOP officials on the grounds that it violated New York’s Constitution, as well as election legislation and the state’s Municipal Home Rule Law.
Rorzio’s conclusion was in line with the RNC’s assertions, and the noncitizen voting legislation was declared invalid and void.
“The Municipal Voting Law is “inappropriate simply and solely because the Constitution says it cannot be done,” according to Rorzio.
“New York’s state constitution explicitly entitles eligible voters to register and vote in elections. The NY State Election legislature reaffirms that eligible citizens meeting residency and age requirements are allowed to register and vote in elections. There is no provision in the state election law allowing the city of New York to pass legislation contradictory to the state constitution and exceed its authority as granted by the NY State Constitution.”
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