There is a very good chance that the next President of the U.S. will be anti-immigration, and some chance that the person holding that office will be deeply hostile to non-citizens. The most effective way to fight against this frightening possibility is to vote. Fortunately, many US Permanent Residents still have time to become citizens before the November Presidential elections – and to make their voices heard at the ballot box. An application for naturalization filed by the end of May might possibly allow the beneficiary to vote for the next President of the United States.
Important! The regulations say that you must have been a green card holder for 5 years, or 3 if your status is based on marriage to a U.S. Citizen. However you may file up to three months early: 4 years and 9 months or 2 years, 9 months, to allow for processing time. This will ensure you become a citizen timely.
There are other requirements. One is “physical presence” at least 30 months out of the 5 years preceding the date of application; a second, continuous residence within the U.S. from the date of application for naturalization and the time of naturalization. However, as with many government rules there are exceptions. They are specific and are best discussed with a qualified immigration lawyer.
In order to naturalize, Permanent Residents also need to take civics, writing and reading tests, and be able to converse in English. They must not have committed certain crimes or have other disqualifying issues. These can be complex matters, depending on the details of the record. A qualified immigration lawyer can review the case quickly and efficiently for barriers to citizenship and possible exceptions to rules.
Non-citizens are extremely limited in what they may legally do to influence election outcomes. However, individuals who hold green cards may contribute or provide non-skilled assistance to political campaigns. For further information visit the “Foreign Nationals” section of the Federal Election Commissions’ web site (fec.gov)
In sum, the best and most effective way to make a difference in U.S. politics is to become a citizen and vote! Make an appointment with an immigration lawyer today.
Renee M. Burek, Esq.
Immigration Law Associates PC
Twelve years of experience providing the highest quality of
legal services to individuals, families and employers in need
of immigration assistance