AUGUSTA — “This is an issue that’s long overdue and needs to be taken care of,” Rep. Billy Bob Faulkingham of Winter Harbor said of noncitizens being allowed to vote.
Right now, noncitizens can’t vote in state or federal elections.
In Maine, whether they can vote in local elections is up to individual municipalities.
“Seventy five percent of American believe only United States citizens should vote in our elections,” said Christopher Arps, president of Americans for Voting Citizens.
Only 4 percent of people living in Maine are noncitizens, according to the American Immigration Council.
Currently, no municipalities allow noncitizens to vote.
“I sponsored LD186 in the legislature. LD186 added one sentence to the Maine constitution,” Faulkingham said of an act he put forward last year.
That one sentence would have removed municipalities’ ability to allow noncitizen to vote.
“One Mainer’s vote being negated by a person that is not supposed to be voting in this state is one vote taken away too many,” said Representative Joel Stetkis of Canaan. He was also in support of LD186.
That act put forward by Faulkingham last year was passed unanimously in the Senate but died in the House.
Everyone who was at the press conference said it was something they’d like to see brought up again in the future.