A registration system intended to register non-citizens to vote in local school board elections is now being dubbed a “bust” by two columnists at the San Fransico Chronicle.
The city of San Francisco started registering non-citizen voters back in July and reportedly shelled out $310,000 on the registration system.
However, the program only ended up registering a total of 49 voters, an average of $6,326 per voter.
Columnists Phil Matier and Andy Ross reported that this was “pretty much a bust the first time out.”
Local officials, however, blamed the Trump administration for low voter registration.
Matier and Ross reported that the officials began voicing their concerns because signing up people could “expose people here illegally to detection by Immigration and Customs Enforcement since voter rolls — including home addresses — could be subpoenaed by the feds.”
Furthermore, Sandra Lee Fewer, a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, asked the city to spend up to $500,000 telling illegal immigrants that registering to vote would send “ICE their way.”
While non-citizens won’t be able to vote in state or federal elections in San Francisco, they will be allowed to vote in local school board races.
Non-citizens will be listed on a separate roster from citizens, according to Fox News, and will receive a ballot with only the school board contest on it.
Fox reported that in 2016, San Francisco voters approved allowing noncitizens to vote in the school board elections “regardless of immigration status.”
Because San Francisco considers itself to be a “sanctuary city,” as a whole, the city is “cautious towards federal immigration officials,” Fox reports.
Due to the cautious attitude, the city has put warnings on voter registration forms as well as flyers telling voters that their information would be public and could be seen by ICE officials.
San Francisco, however, isn’t the only place in America where non-citizens are being allowed to vote in local elections.
Maryland has at least six cities that allow non-citizens to vote, while Massachusetts is pushing for four of its cities to allow non-citizens to vote in local elections.
Shamann Walton, a district commissioner in San Fransico’s schools, told the Los Angeles Times that if it weren’t for President Trump, allowing non-citizens to vote would be a lot easier.
He told the Times, “Trump will not always be president. Hopefully we’ll have leaders who are inclusive and really believe that if you are a resident of this country, you should have the same rights as other people.”
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