Sunday, October 05, 2008

Boulder ballot measure would allow non-U.S. citizens to serve on city boards and commissions

For an alleged right wing death beast, your darling d-blog is notably squishy on immigration, but this is ridiculous. The Daily Camera:
The measure would remove the charter requirement that applicants to serve on those boards and commissions be “registered electors” — that is, registered to vote. Instead, applicants hoping for an appointment from the City Council to those boards would simply have to be 18 years old and have lived in the city for at least a year.

The measure’s backers say it will help the city reach out to a broader group of people who can make meaningful contributions to city government, even if they aren’t U.S. citizens. Boulder’s City Council has twice in the past two years considered putting similar measures on the ballot and then backed away in the face of criticism. This time, the measure’s on, but critics remain.

“My main problem with this is that the City Council should not be granting rights or privileges to noncitizens to take an official role in the government of this city,” said Fred Rubin, a Boulder resident who urged members of the council not to put the question to voters.

Rubin said it doesn’t make sense to give people who haven’t committed to becoming U.S. citizens a role on often-powerful city boards, some of which can make quasi-judicial rulings about what homeowners can do with their property, for example.

“When they start granting rights to noncitizens who have sway over citizens, I find that really objectionable,” he said.
Proponents counter with the ur-PC argument of inclusiveness:
But City Councilwoman Angelique Espinoza, who supports the measure, said its aim is simple — and shouldn’t be threatening.

“At its core, this issue is really about inclusion,” she said. “It’s about getting representatives from the whole community at the table as we make decisions about our whole community. I think that some opponents of the measure have conflated it with some other issues.”

Espinoza said her husband — a German citizen — has lived in Boulder for 16 years and isn’t a U.S. citizen but still participates fully in the community.

“Why on Earth is it significant if he’s serving on a board that might be making a quasi-judicial decision concerning someone who’s lived here for a year and happens to have been born in this country?” she said. “We need to look at whether citizenship has much of an impact on how people make decisions in their community. These are not national security issues. ... There are many people in this community who have been here, who will be here and are greatly invested, and that has nothing to do with their nationality.”
Sorry, not buying it. At the Rocky Mountain News, which picked up the story, commenter "Michael" responds succinctly:
What a transparent attempt by the liberal, open-borders, citizens-of-the-world Boulder-ites to "backdoor" illegal aliens into a position of setting official city policy. As illegals are not allowed to vote FOR city offcials, hell, let's just let them be appointed or otherwise attain positions of power and policy over American citizens without having to go through all that nonsense of having to learn American history, how to speak English, attain a Green Card, or become a citizen. This is lunacy. Is there any other country that allows this? How about we just allow this at the federal level as well?
That, I believe, is a rhetorical question.

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