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Queens Council Members Split Over Granting Non Citizens NYC Voting Rights

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Jan. 27, 2020 By Kristen Torres

The Queens delegation is split over a city bill that would grant green card holders and many other legal immigrants the right to vote in city elections.

The bill, introduced in the City Council on Jan. 23, would grant permanent residents and other legal immigrants with the right to vote in city elections, including for mayor, comptroller, city council and borough president.

Queens Council Members Costa Constantinides, Donovan Richards, Jimmy Van Bramer, Daniel Dromm, I. Daneek Miller, Adrienne E. Adams and Antonio Reynoso are among the 29 council members who have sponsored the legislation.

Queens Council Members Robert Holden, Paul Vallone, Karen Koslowitz, Francisco Moya, Barry Grodenchik, Rory Lancman, Eric Ulrich and Peter Koo have not signed on.

Under the bill, city officials would be tasked with creating a new voter registration form for “municipal voters,” who are non-citizens but hold greens cards or work authorizations and have lived in the city for at least 30 days prior to an election.

Council Member Dromm said in a Tweet Friday that any NYC resident who pays taxes should have the right to vote.

“No taxation without representation is a principal the US was founded on,” he wrote. “It’s a basic civil right.”

The legislation has the potential to make a huge impact on city politics—nearly 660,000 New Yorkers hold a green card, according to a 2018 report by the Mayor’s Office on Immigrant Affairs, and would be given voting rights under the new bill.

If approved, the bill could go into effect as early as 2021.

Critics of the legislation, however, said granting voting rights to non-citizens is simply not fair to citizen voters.

“I don’t think this is the right way to legislate…I believe that citizens are the only people who should have the right to vote,” said Council Member Robert Holden in a statement Friday.

“We should be focusing on increasing the poor voter turnout we have seen among citizens in recent elections.”

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If they want to vote, why don’t they become citizens? Pass the citizenship exam. If they are unable to pass the exam, how can they be qualified to vote?


Non citizens voting in any election is voter tampering by foreign governments. Non citizens have no allegiance to our flag and country. All voters should have to show identification

Don’t believe it

Only citizens have the right to vote. These politicians who support non- citizens voting are only looking for additional votes for themselves. Don’t believe otherwise. These are craven people only interested in self-preservation.

Sara Ross

If you have a green card and are here legally, you should be able to vote, BUT “Vote Here” should only be in English because it takes years to get a green card and be here legally and in those years, you should know some English. I’m more against people here with no papers getting access to free food, cultural sites, driver licenses, etc. No papers of any kind mean you don’t belong in this country. Do it the right way.


Not everyone is entitled to everything. People that are given things without working for them appreciate nothing.


These three council members are always on the wrong side of just about every issue. Why don’t you let the people vote on it.

Dietmar Detering

for your interest: non-citizen voting used to be the norm in the United States, and several municipalities still or again allow it:
The 28 member nations of the European Union allow citizens of member nations to vote in local elections.
We are talking local elections, not national ones. Your citizenship is a national one. It does not give you the right to vote in any local election: you have to live there! With living there being the rule in all municipal elections all around the world, this bill is trying to address the voting rights of people who cannot qualify to vote in any other municipal election but those in NYC – where they live, work, pay taxes, and send their children to school.

Ridiculous proposal

This bill should’ve been dead on arrival. It starts with green card holders and other legal residents…down the road, they’ll let all illegal aliens vote so they can stay in power.

This city really needs a conservative balance to check the far left. The quality of life in this city has been going down the drain since Bloomberg left office and these politicians are accelerating the decline.

Ellis Island

Too many bleeding hearts who want illegal aliens here. The federal government has to slow the tide of immigration both illegal and legal.


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