New Haven Asks State to Allow Non-Citizens to Vote

New Haven's mayor wants illegal immigrants to be able vote in municipal elections.

New Haven Mayor John DeStefano plans to ask the state Legislature to allow illegal immigrants who live in the city to be able vote in municipal elections.

DeStefano said on Tuesday that the proposal would build a more engaged community and follows the lead of other cities, the New Haven Independent reports.

The Independent reports that New Haven has about 10,000  non-citizen immigrants.

Immigrants who are in the U.S. legally or illegally and cannot vote now would still be unable to vote in state or federal elections.

DeStefano, a Democrat, said illegal immigrants pay taxes indirectly through rent and send their kids to New Haven schools and should be able to vote.

New Haven made national headlines in 2007 when the city approved a program that provides municipal identification cards for all residents -- including illegal immigrants -- to provide access to services such as banking and the library.

Malloy told the New Haven Register, "it's not an idea that I'm particularly comfortable with."

The Democratic governor said he believes there are obligations and privileges that come with legal citizenship, but he's willing to "hear the mayor out" on his proposal.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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