A pair of Vermont towns will print multilingual ballots and will allow foreign nationals to vote in their local elections.
Montpelier, the state capital of Vermont, and Winooski, located just outside of Burlington, both will hold local elections. Foreign nationals will be allowed to vote in both towns. Winooski is even going so far as to do community outreach to get as many foreign nationals registered to vote as possible, including providing multilingual ballots in a variety of languages.
In June of 2021, the Vermont state legislature approved changes to the charters governing Montpelier and Winooski so that foreign nationals could vote in local elections.
ProEnglish agrees with the late Dr. John Silber, the former President of Boston University, who stated during his 1996 testimony to Congress that bilingual and multilingual ballots “impose an unacceptable cost by degrading the very concept of the citizen to that of someone lost in a country whose public discourse is incomprehensible to him.”
ProEnglish believes that there are 5 key reasons to oppose multilingual ballots and election materials: (1) there is no justification for multilingual ballots and election materials; (2) multilingual ballot and election material requirements are arbitrary and wasteful; (3) multilingual ballots and election materials are an unfunded mandate on local governments; (4) multilingual ballots and election materials increase the likelihood of errors and vote fraud; and (5) multilingual ballots and election materials are a very costly and growing burden.