Vt. Supreme Court hears GOP appeal on noncitizen voting

Published: Oct. 26, 2022 at 10:26 PM EDT
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MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) - The question of whether noncitizens can vote in local elections went before the Vermont Supreme Court Wednesday.

The Vermont Legislature gave the green light to two charter changes in Montpelier and Winooski last year allowing noncitizens to vote in local elections and on school budgets. The Republican National Committee then unsuccessfully sued the two towns.

In their appeal of that decision. lawyers representing the GOP and the city of Montpelier on Wednesday gave oral arguments.

“In Vermont, once an education budget is approved by local voters, paying for it becomes the responsibility of the state Education Fund. In other words, noncitizens are voting for school budgets in which the entire state is obligated to pay,” said Brady Toensing, a lawyer representing the GOP.

“If you don’t have harm, you don’t have standing. Adding people to the voter rolls in Montpelier does not result in harm because there is no weight reduction in your vote. One vote at the end of the day is still worth one vote,” said Michael Tarrant, a lawyer for Montpelier.

There is no timeline yet on when the high court will rule on the case.

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