Morella Backs Alien Voter Rights

Congresswoman Connie Morella supports the mayor's idea to allow non U.S. citizens to vote in local elections in the nation's capital.

Morella, who chairs D.C.'s House Oversight Committee, told local radio WAMU that she'll work to persuade her colleagues to get behind the District's wishes.

Mayor Tony Williams said Wednesday that he thinks permanent resident aliens who pay taxes should be able to vote locally.

Williams said he has supported giving the vote to resident aliens for several years. He intends to meet with the Council of Latino Agencies to build support for the issue.

Williams said he's not concerned about congressional opposition, which Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton thinks won't be much, because he considers this a home rule issue.

In jurisdictions where resident aliens have been granted local voting rights, they're still prohibited from voting in federal elections.