Scott vetoes bills allowing noncitizen voting in Montpelier and Winooski

Vermont

In this Sept. 8, 2020 photo, voting booths are kept socially distant at the Chesterfield, N.H. polling site. A majority of President Donald Trump’s supporters plan to cast their ballot on Election Day, while about half of Joe Biden’s backers plan to vote by mail. That’s according to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC […]

Gov. Phil Scott has vetoed two bills that would have approved charter amendments in Montpelier and Winooski to allow noncitizen residents to vote in their local elections.

Scott wrote in his veto letter that while well-intentioned the measures would lead to inconsistency in election policy and create separate but unequal classes of residents potentially able to vote on local issues.

“I believe it is the role of the Legislature to establish clarity and consistency on this matter,” Scott said in the veto letter. “This should include defining how municipalities determine which legal residents may vote on local issues, as well as specifying the local matters they may vote on. Returning these bills provides the opportunity to do this important work.” 

He asked the Legislature to revisit the topic and develop a statewide policy or uniform process for municipalities wishing to do so to grant the voting right in local elections “to all legal residents.”

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