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  1. #1
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    Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Simple question: Should resident aliens, whether here legally or illegally, be allowed to vote in the United States?

    I say no. Only citizens of the United States should be allowed to vote in the United States. I think the logic of my position is self-evident, so I won't go into detail.

    Does anyone disagree? If so, why?
    "If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth." - Ronald Reagan

  2. #2
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Aren't resident aliens here legally...isn't that like having a green card?
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  3. #3
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by CowboyX View Post
    Aren't resident aliens here legally...isn't that like having a green card?
    Some resident aliens are here legally and have greed cards or other documents. Others are permanent residents here without a green card, and we generally call them illegal aliens.

    Should any of them be allowed to vote?
    "If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth." - Ronald Reagan

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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Those who are here legally, sure, I don't see why not.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by CowboyX View Post
    Those who are here legally, sure, I don't see why not.
    Let's say a young Saudi national comes to the U.S. on a student visa. There is a Presidential election shortly after he arrives. He knows nothing about American history, government, democracy, customs or laws. More importantly, he has no allegiance to our country, but instead has allegiance to the Saudi King and Saudi Arabia. Because of all that, my position is that he should not be allowed a vote to elect our leaders. Why do you think that he should?
    "If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth." - Ronald Reagan

  6. #6
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    First, let's clearly separate illegal v. legal residents. I think all but the most fervent La Raza supporters will agree illegal residents should not be allowed to vote. So, the question is strictly about those who are legal U.S. residents. For the sake of argument, perhaps we should more narrowly include only legal U.S. residents with a green card so we can exclude those who are here legally due to executive order. That group, are a special group which can be debated separately.

    So, assuming someone is here by permission of the U.S. government and has followed all laws to reside here and is a resident here, then should that person be allowed to vote? My answer would be yes and no. I think as it pertains to national elections, no. Legal residents who are not U.S. citizens should not be allowed to vote for candidates seeking national offices. A legal resident is not a U.S. citizen. They may or may not know the language. They may or may not have access to American news. They may or may not be learned in U.S. government, history, or foreign policy. You'd run the risk of allowing foreign nations to influence U.S. elections by purposefully migrating large groups immigrants to specific regions. I see little benefit in changing current election law in this regard. I'd probably make a very similar argument as it regards statewide elections.

    On the other hand, I see no reason why legal resident cannot be eligible to vote in local elections. First, it would be a good place to train those seeking to become U.S. citizens in civics. Second, local politics is about the local residents and the local residents, whether a citizen or not, should be able to influence the politics of the community where they live. Why shouldn't legal residents have the power to influence local laws and regulations? I don't really see a downside here. I see a huge upside as it is a way to bring these folks into the national culture as part of a process. I just imagine a North Korean or Iranian resident who gets their first taste of democracy and just how influential that can be in how they choose to assimilate.

    But, hey, what do I know? I am just another hateful, right-winger, who is anti-immigrant, right?
    The U.S. is currently enduring a zombie apocalypse. However, in a strange twist, the zombie's are starving.

  7. #7
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    He knows nothing about American history, government, democracy, customs or laws.

    How do we know that?

    What if he's from England? Do we assume he does know all those things?
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  8. #8
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by CowboyX View Post
    How do we know that?
    It is a not-so-hypothetical, JJ. Given what I wrote, should he have a right to vote?

    Quote Originally Posted by CowboyX View Post
    What if he's from England? Do we assume he does know all those things?
    If you want to assume that, okay. But his citizenship and allegiance is still to another country, not the United States.
    "If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth." - Ronald Reagan

  9. #9
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    Let's say a young Saudi national comes to the U.S. on a student visa. There is a Presidential election shortly after he arrives. He knows nothing about American history, government, democracy, customs or laws.
    You mean like a great many other Americans? ;P

    I don't think not residents should vote, there just isn't much call for it or reason to do it.
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  10. #10
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by evensaul View Post
    It is a not-so-hypothetical, JJ. Given what I wrote, should he have a right to vote?

    If you want to assume that, okay. But his citizenship and allegiance is still to another country, not the United States.

    Under your hypothetical I couldn't see why he'd want to. For example, let's take a college student from england who comes here to work/study/experience america/travel abroad...aside from partying and getting laid...I couldn't seriously imagine them taking time to worry about going through the bother of voting even if given the opportunity.

    Perhaps, let's say, they having a thing about being contributing members of whatever society they happen to be in. I see no reason to not let them.
    "Real Boys Kiss Boys" -M.L.

  11. #11
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by CowboyX View Post
    Under your hypothetical I couldn't see why he'd want to. For example, let's take a college student from england who comes here to work/study/experience america/travel abroad...aside from partying and getting laid...I couldn't seriously imagine them taking time to worry about going through the bother of voting even if given the opportunity.

    Perhaps, let's say, they having a thing about being contributing members of whatever society they happen to be in. I see no reason to not let them.
    I don't really understand your pov. You do believe in national sovereignty, right?
    The U.S. is currently enduring a zombie apocalypse. However, in a strange twist, the zombie's are starving.

  12. #12
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    That a nation has the right to rule over itself, yes, is that how you're defining it? What does that have to do with the conversation here?
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  13. #13
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by CowboyX View Post
    That a nation has the right to rule over itself, yes, is that how you're defining it? What does that have to do with the conversation here?
    I find it interesting that you do not see a relationship between national sovereignty and voting. You acknowledge that a nation has the right to rule over itself, but you are willing to hand over our right of self-determination to foreign citizens. What does it mean to have self-rule if not through voting? You have conceded a right of nationality and then made meaningless the method used to exercise it.
    The U.S. is currently enduring a zombie apocalypse. However, in a strange twist, the zombie's are starving.

  14. #14
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    From the definition given they're legal resident aliens, you make it sound like they're just here on vacation and want to vote for a giggle. If they want to contribute to the debate on things that effect the schools they're attending or the places they are working I see no reason why they shouldn't.

    If what you're saying is the case then why let them come at all?
    "Real Boys Kiss Boys" -M.L.

  15. #15
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by CowboyX View Post
    From the definition given they're legal resident aliens, you make it sound like they're just here on vacation and want to vote for a giggle. If they want to contribute to the debate on things that effect the schools they're attending or the places they are working I see no reason why they shouldn't.

    If what you're saying is the case then why let them come at all?
    I actually stated in this thread that I support legal residents voting in local elections. So, we agree on that part. I specifically stated that I do not believe they should be voting in national elections. So, maybe you and I completely agree on this.
    The U.S. is currently enduring a zombie apocalypse. However, in a strange twist, the zombie's are starving.

  16. #16
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Except for the national election part and the reason you stated, right? I disagree with that. Then again, I think voting day should be a national paid day off and that there should be sanctions against not voting - just like not showing up for jury duty - I know, what a crazy liberal.
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  17. #17
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ibelsd View Post
    I actually stated in this thread that I support legal residents voting in local elections. So, we agree on that part. I specifically stated that I do not believe they should be voting in national elections. So, maybe you and I completely agree on this.
    Local elections are occasionally decided by a few votes, and there are 13 million green card holders. Why are you willing to have local elections possibly turn on the votes of non-citizens?

    If a legal permanent resident (green card holder) wants to vote, why shouldn't he become a citizen first?

    I wouldn't want a local election or ballot proposition result to flip because of votes from foreign nationals who are here on temporary work permits or student visas. But if we do that, then we might as well let foreign tourists vote in whatever town they may happen to be visiting during election week.

    If the idea is to give those from non-democratic countries a chance to vote, maybe we should have a lottery allowing a certain number of lucky foreigners the chance to vote absentee in a random local election, even if they've never been to the United States. Wouldn't that be a wonderful way to promote the idea of democracy around the world?
    Last edited by evensaul; February 21st, 2015 at 11:14 AM.
    "If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth." - Ronald Reagan

  18. #18
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by CowboyX View Post
    Except for the national election part and the reason you stated, right? I disagree with that. Then again, I think voting day should be a national paid day off and that there should be sanctions against not voting - just like not showing up for jury duty - I know, what a crazy liberal.
    Not everyone who is called for jury duty actually serves on a jury. Potential jurors are questioned to make sure they are qualified to make an impartial judgment in a particular case. If you place voting on the same level as jury duty you need to have a way to weed out voters who don't know enough about the issues and the candidates to be qualified to actually vote.
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  19. #19
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    On the subject of "why don't they become US citizens so they can vote" I'd like to offer some input (given that my wife is a permanent resident who's yet to become a US citizen).

    It can be expensive. The TIME article states, "The total of $680 comes from a $595 application fee and a $85 “biometric fee” that is funneled toward background-check costs like fingerprinting. Applicants have to pay the $680 regardless of whether their application is successful—and sometimes it isn’t. So consider that, for starters. It's almost $700 dollars JUST to apply and if the application is denied, you're back where you started, and you just lost an average month's rent.

    And that's JUST talking about the application itself.

    Since the question itself is ultimately an argument of, "Not a citizen, then not allowed to vote" I would offer the following: Not a citizen? Your income shouldn't be taxed by a government you can't choose. If you're not allowed to vote, that same governing body shouldn't be taking your money. Because as it stands, that's taxation without representation. Something our history books tend to tell us led to the American Revolution.
    But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.
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  21. #20
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    Re: Should Resident Aliens Be Allowed To Vote In The United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Hyde View Post
    Since the question itself is ultimately an argument of, "Not a citizen, then not allowed to vote" I would offer the following: Not a citizen? Your income shouldn't be taxed by a government you can't choose. If you're not allowed to vote, that same governing body shouldn't be taking your money. Because as it stands, that's taxation without representation. Something our history books tend to tell us led to the American Revolution.
    This argument doesn't hold up. At all. First, the right to vote isn't the same as representation. The claim of "No taxation without representation" in the American colonies was used because those colonies had no one representing them in Parliament, not because individual citizens were deprived of voting rights. Permanent residents are represented in the same was as non-voting minors and convicted felons, by the elected officials in whose districts they live, despite their own inability to vote. Second, you seem to argue that permanent residents should have almost all of the benefits of living in the United States (military and police protection, Constitutional rights afforded to all who live here including non-discrimination in employment and housing, OSHA regulations providing a safe workplace, food and drug inspections and other consumer protections, etc, etc, without having to pay to support those rights and benefits. That would be more than a little one-sided in favor of the untaxed green card holder.

    ---------- Post added at 08:15 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:11 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Hyde View Post
    On the subject of "why don't they become US citizens so they can vote" I'd like to offer some input (given that my wife is a permanent resident who's yet to become a US citizen).
    I asked why shouldn't they become US citizens, not why they don't. But I'd like to offer some feedback to your comments (given that I scraped together enough money to get my wife naturalized.) If some choose not to become a citizen because it is inconvenient or might cost a few hundred dollars, then they don't appreciate the privilege of becoming a US citizen enough to make it happen, and shouldn't be given the associated right to vote.
    Last edited by evensaul; February 21st, 2015 at 09:04 PM.
    "If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth." - Ronald Reagan

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