With the U.S. border being inundated with illegal migrants flowing through at record levels. U.S. Sen. Katie Britt (R-Montgomery) led a coalition of Republicans on the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration on Tuesday to introduce the Citizens Ballot Protection Act.

The Act is a companion bill to H.R.4316 originally introduced by U.S. Rep. Gary Palmer (R-Hoover), reported on by 1819 News last week.

The bills would ensure states can verify that only American citizens vote in federal elections. Palmer's success in the House last week and Britt's charge in the Senate puts the issue one step closer to being law.

In recent years, states like Maryland, Vermont and New York have passed legislation allowing noncitizens to vote in local elections. Washington, D.C. recently decided to allow noncitizens who have been residents for only 30 days or more to vote in local elections starting in 2024.

SEE ALSO: U.S. Rep. Gary Palmer's bill requiring proof of citizenship to vote passes.

Discussing the bill, Britt said, "Voting in our country is a sacred right that must solely be limited to American citizens. To allow states to uphold this principle should be simple commonsense,"

Britt continued, "We are seeing certain cities across the nation begin openly allowing noncitizens to vote in local elections. This effectively disenfranchises hardworking American citizens, insults those American citizens who came to our country legally and took the time and effort to go through the citizenship process, and undermines faith in our entire electoral system – which is a cornerstone of our nation that we cannot allow to crumble. It should not be controversial that States have the legal right to prevent noncitizens – including illegal migrants and official representatives of foreign adversaries – from voting in State and Federal elections."

"I'm proud to work with Representative Palmer and my Senate colleagues to ensure that we pass this legislation and stand up for the right of Americans – and only Americans – to vote in American elections," she concluded.

Though the U.S. Constitution gives states the primary responsibility of overseeing federal elections, the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) of 1993 has since restricted states from verifying citizenship to vote. The NRVA further says that "mail voter registration form may not include any requirement for notarization or other formal authentication," forcing states to rely on the word of the filer.

The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (USEAC) and courts have interpreted this wording to preclude any state's efforts to verify proof of citizenship with the federal form. Most notably, in 2013, a U.S. Supreme Court ruling held that Arizona could not require documentary proof of citizenship on the federal registration form without approval from the USEAC.

The Citizenship Protection Act is a two-page bill that amends the NVRA to explicitly allow states to put in place a proof of citizenship requirement for both the federal mail voter registration form and any state mail voter registration forms they may develop.

Britt's coalition of original co-sponsors included all Republican members of the Senate Rules Committee, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Senate Rules Committee ranking member Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), and U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W. Va.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) and Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.)

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