Sunday, June 10th, 2018

Federal Court Distinguishes Immigration Cases Where Aliens Voted in Elections

"Two immigrant aliens who married U.S. citizens and had pending petitions to become lawful permanent residents voted in federal elections.  That’s a problem.  One just lost his federal appeals fight to remain in the country.  The other still has a shot to stay.  An immigration judge and the Board of Immigration Appeals (Board) found that Anthony Kimani, a Kenyan citizen, and Elizabeth Keathley, a citizen of the Philippines, violated 18 U.S.C. § 611 when they voted in U.S. federal elections before attaining permanent resident status.  Section 611(a) declares it unlawful for any alien to vote for a U.S. President, Vice President, or member of Congress, among other public offices.  An individual who violates this provision is not eligible for permanent resident status as the spouse of a U.S. citizen.  Based on the violations, the immigration judge in both cases ordered deportation.  Both parties appealed.  In