“We are prepared to open up the political process and let all of the people come in,” Rep. John Lewis, a Georgia Democrat and hero of the civil rights movement, told colleagues as he led opposition to the GOP measure.
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“It sounds like I’m making it up,” Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) said. “What kind of government would cancel the vote of its own citizens, and replace it with non citizens?”
Odum said Vermont’s state constitution doesn’t explicitly bar noncitizens from voting in local elections. But the city’s charter would need to be changed, via a special election, to allow it in Montpelier. And then state lawmakers in Vermont would have to give it their OK. A measure allowing noncitizens to vote in local elections could pass in liberal Montpelier, predicts Odum, who said he’s received very little pushback since word of this proposal got out. “Nothing from inside of Montpelier,” he said. “And just a smidgen from outside the city.” But he’s not so sure state lawmakers would go for it.