Thursday, October 30, 2008

Just because you aren't a citizen doesn't mean you don't care about who wins

Unable to vote, noncitizen immigrants volunteer

The Associated Press
Thursday, October 30, 2008; 3:06 PM

-- From Florida to California, they're working hard on the upcoming election _ knocking on doors in ethnic neighborhoods, manning the phones in myriad languages and distributing political flyers. But come Tuesday, they won't vote. They can't: They're not citizens.

The excitement that has made American voter registration numbers soar has trickled deep into the country's immigrant population. But almost two-thirds of the 37.5 million foreign-born people in the United States have not taken the oath of allegiance, and are shut out from casting a ballot.

Non-citizen immigrants, legal or not, are putting their time and their effort where their vote would be.

"There are a lot of people who want to be voters one day, but it can take a lot of time," said Kishan Putta, national director of Indians for McCain. "They do want to get involved. They're calling, wanting to participate."

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