Non-citizen parents and guardians of children in San Francisco Unified School District are now able to register to vote for Board of Education members, the city’s Department of Elections announced.
The department began issuing voter registration forms today for the Nov. 6 election.
The effort follows the city’s passage of a 2016 ballot measure that gave the right to vote in school board elections to non-U.S. citizens over age 18 who live in San Francisco and have children under age 19, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.
Although the launch is being considered a victory for non-citizens, some have expressed concern about whether voting information about non-citizen voters can be shared with the federal government, possibly putting the undocumented voters at-risk for deportation, SF Gate Local News reports.
“This is no-brainer legislation, Why would we not want our parents invested in the education of their children?” ~ Hillary Ronen Board of Supervisors
Oddly enough it turns out that Voting Laws have a loophole:
(a) It shall be unlawful for any alien to vote in any election held solely or in part for the purpose of electing a candidate for the office of President, Vice President, Presidential elector, Member of the Senate, Member of the House of Representatives, Delegate from the District of Columbia, or Resident Commissioner, unless—(2) aliens are authorized to vote for such other purpose under a State constitution or statute or a local ordinance; and
The federal laws as a nation say that illegal aliens cannot vote, that it is illegal. The loophole is that the Federal laws push it off onto individual states to decide if each State wants to allow state voting.
“The victory is that San Franciscans voted for this. In the face of what’s happening nationwide now, we stand strong. … But there is also a risk. So we as San Franciscans have set aside a fund to make sure that these immigrant communities are fully educated on their rights, but also their risks in this time and place in our country,” ~ Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer
Not everyone is on board with their new policy and sadly they are few in number and being ignored in San Francisco.
“The reason I voted against it is that I think the right to vote is something that goes along with citizenship — and should be.” ~
Chris “Badger” Thomas is a Veteran who served our country as an Army Combat Medic.