Stephen Melkisethian via Flickr

Over 14o Democrats on Thursday voted against a Republican-led bill that prevents noncitizens from voting in Washington, D.C., elections.

H.R. 192 passed the House with 52 Democrats joining Republicans, despite House Democratic leadership’s campaign to lobby their members to oppose the bill. The 143 Democrats that voted against the bill included Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and former Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi of California.


The bill was introduced by Republican Rep. August Pfluger of Texas and was originally voted on in February of 2023 in response to the District of Columbia Council’s Local Resident Voting Rights Amendment Act of 2022. This local ordinance allowed noncitizens and illegal immigrants to vote in local elections in the nation’s capital.

The bill passed the House in 2023 with 162 Democrats voting against the bill and 42 Democrats voting with Republicans, but was voted down in the Democratic-controlled Senate. Ten additional Democrats joined Republicans during Thursday’s vote compared to the previous attempt at passing the bill.


House Democratic leadership urged fellow Democratic members to vote against the bill, citing D.C.’s “right for self-governance and statehood,” according to a whip document sent to House Democrats that was obtained by Axios.

The document noted that “16 other jurisdictions across the U.S. have enacted similar provisions” that permit non-citizens to vote, and accused House Republicans of “attempting to undermine the political self-determination” of D.C. residents. Washington, D.C., is within the legal purview of Congress.

In January 2023, Republican Rep. Chip Roy of Texas and Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas introduced similar legislation in the House and the Senate aimed at preventing noncitizens from voting. This legislation was also introduced in response to the D.C. ordinance.

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