Controversy Erupts Over Rep. Jamie Raskin’s 1993 Paper Advocating For ‘Alien Suffrage’

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD), a prominent House Democrat, is facing criticism for a 1993 paper he wrote defending the concept of “Alien Suffrage,” which argues for allowing noncitizens to vote. The paper, titled “Legal Aliens, Local Citizens: The Historical Constitutional and Theoretical Meanings of Alien Suffrage,” has resurfaced amidst a contentious debate over a House bill aimed at preventing noncitizens from voting in Washington, D.C. elections.

In his paper, Raskin contended that “the current blanket exclusion of noncitizens from the ballot is neither constitutionally required nor historically normal.” He suggested that “Alien suffrage would thus become part of a basic human right to democracy.”

Raskin, who also serves as the ranking member of the House Oversight Committee, was among the 143 Democrats who voted against the bill to bar noncitizen voting in D.C. elections, while 52 Democrats joined Republicans in supporting the measure.

Several cities in Raskin’s home state of Maryland have allowed foreign nationals to vote in local elections for years, with advocates arguing that resident aliens should have a say in local governance due to their contributions to the community.

However, a national poll by RMG Research, Inc. for Americans for Citizen Voting found that 75 percent of Americans oppose allowing foreign nationals to vote in local elections, aligning with the sentiments behind the House bill and broader efforts like the Safeguard American Voter Eligibility Act (SAVE Act) to tighten voter registration requirements.

Republicans cite the influx of illegal immigrants and criminal cases in North Carolina revealing noncitizen voting as reasons for strengthening election integrity measures. Raskin’s office did not respond to requests for comment on his current stance on the issue.

Previous articleUncommitted Democratic Delegates Seek To Influence Gaza Policy At National Convention
Next articleVeteran Lawmakers Call For Increased National Service, Warn Of Low Military Participation