One of the great privileges of being a U.S. citizen is the ability to vote in elections, may they be at the state or federal level. Protecting this special privilege means that election officials and the Department of Homeland Security need to verify the citizenship status of potential voters.
With ties to the controversial Secure Communities program that many residents in Los Angeles, California are familiar with, a brewing out-of-state issue shows just how unstable fingerprint-sharing laws are — especially given the inconsistent enforcement of such rules, which only spurs confusion and fear amongst illegal immigrants and U.S. citizens alike.
Florida has sued DHS for barring the state from accessing a finger-print sharing network, which could help identify illegal immigrants who are attempting to pose as citizens. Complicating matters, the U.S. Department of Justice told the state that their initiative to identify the citizenship status of voters may not comply with federal law.
Considering the most recent comments of President Barack Obama, it would appear the federal government is attempting to be more lenient with illegal immigrants. That doesn’t mean Florida’s initiative is wrong per se, but it does mean that there could be yet another shift in the way immigration laws are enforced.
Ultimately, the ever-fluctuating ways of immigrations laws and enforcement require a skilled and experienced representative for any legal action involving immigration issues. With proper legal representation (may it be in court or as an advisor), illegal immigrants can get themselves on a path to citizenship — and the voting booths.
Source: Bloomberg, “Florida Sues U.S. Over Database To Verify Citizenship,” Joel Rosenblatt, June 11, 2012