Becoming a resident of a state may confer the right to get a driver's license, but it does not and should not confer citizenship. According to U.S. law, lawful residents must speak English and swear allegiance to the United States before becoming citizens.
They also must become citizens before they can vote. We don't want any immigrants voting who haven't made the conscious and sincere decision to renounce loyalty to the country they came from and pledge allegiance to the United States of America.
The Constitution should also be our starting point in the matter of allowing felons to vote. The U.S. Constitution reserves the matter of voting regulations to state legislatures and, in the 14th Amendment, Section 2, specifically authorizes the disenfranchisement of felons.
Nevertheless, Democrats have persuaded activist judges to force Florida into assisting felons, as they leave prison, in getting the right to vote. The Kerry campaign has set up a nationwide legal network to recruit litigators and election lawyers to challenge election results in Florida and other close states.
Democrats have been whining about people who were mistakenly listed as felons on a state database during the 2000 Florida election. But the Democrats are silent about convicted felons who actually voted illegally in the 2000 Florida election, as well as the people who received absentee ballots to vote in New York and Florida.
I suggest that those worried about whole groups of people being disenfranchised, or not having their votes counted, should consider the plight of oversees U.S. military personnel.
In 2000, an untold number of military ballots were never counted.
Today, about 150,000 military men and women are serving in Iraq or Afghanistan. They, above all, deserve to have their ballots counted.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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