Before he was even sworn into office, newly-elected Minneapolis City Council member Jason Chavez announced that he’s following the lead from New York City where that city council recently voted to allow noncitizens and undocumented immigrants to vote in future municipal elections.
According to Axios Twin Cities, “Minneapolis is home to about 30,000 noncitizen immigrants ages 16 and older” who would, under this proposal, be able to vote in future Minneapolis municipal elections.
The good news is that it would likely take a state constitutional amendment to be enacted for the city to allow noncitizens to vote because Minnesota’s state constitution and elections laws define voters as citizens. That means, as Axios reports, a change in statute — or even a constitutional amendment — would likely be needed in order for the city to enact such a change.
But it isn’t hard to imagine our closely divided legislature allowing such an amendment to be placed on the ballot in 2022 to encourage higher “progressive voter” turnout.