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New York City approved a measure to allow almost 800,000 non-citizens to vote in local elections on Thursday.
The Democrat-controlled city council passed the “Our City, Our Vote” measure in a vote of 33-14.
The legislation gives non-citizens who have lived in the city for at least 30 days and are legal permanent residents in the U.S. — including green card holders, individuals with workers permits and DACA holders — the right to vote in city elections, including mayor, public advocate, borough president and city council, CNN reports.
The New York State Republican Party vowed last week to take legal action to stop the measure.
“We pledge action, legal or otherwise, any means necessary to stop this dangerous legislation from undermining our elections,” Nick Langworthy, GOP party chairman, said, noting the law would “allow foreign powers … the ability to influence U.S. elections.”
Democratic Majority Leader Laurie Cumbo said it could hurt African-American communities and the efforts immigrants go through to earn the right to vote.
Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, the prime sponsor of the bill, told CNN it’s about championing “no taxation without representation.”
“But the constitution of New York State and the New York City Charter is a live document that provides the opportunity for us to always look to make it better. I think that today we were able to make that important change that recognizes the contributions of immigrants,” Rodriguez told the outlet.
Mayor Bill de Blasio said he opposes the measure, which doesn’t include state or federal elections and illegals, but won’t veto it.