Monday, October 24, 2011

US citizens who aren't allowed to vote.

She'll have to pay taxes but won't be allowed to vote
Photo by Angelina Mok
I love our daughter. Before being a parent, I sort of thought I understood what it meant, but I couldn't really feel it until my daughter was born. We want her to have the best life we can possibly give her. We want her to have every opportunity and we, like many parents, forego things for ourselves to make sure we can provide them to her.

That's why I'm upset that even though she'll be liable for taxes to a country she may never live in, as the law currently stands, she won't be allowed to vote. That's right. If she doesn't move to the US, my home country will demand taxes from her but won't allow her to vote. Seems to me this was a famous sticking point in the US history ...

In other news, I'll be in Prague at a conference this week. I'm not sure if I'll be able to post while I'm there.


  1. It's still better than Canada, whose citizens living abroad lose the right to vote after five years (as is my case). I can't really complain, because I have dual citizenship since I'm also French (as I understand your daughter is) and I see no real reason why I should get double voting rights, but there's definitely something incoherent about these laws. (What infuriates me more is that since I'm a Canadian born outside of Canada, I'm a second-class citizen and my children, were I to have any, could not inherit Canadian citizenship through me. At least the US doesn't make use of that particular way of adding insult to injury.)

  2. Dear Ovid,
    Voting rights of U.S. citizen children born to Americans while overseas, but having never established residency in the U.S., vary by state.

    Nineteen states, allow these American children who have never lived in the U.S. and/or established U.S. residency to vote. They have effectively passed on the rights given through the Uniformed and Overseas Citizen Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) to the American citizen children of these voters.
    You can find the list here:

  3. hmm, that link doesn't come up, but will try again.,45

    If that doesn't work, go to Overseas Vote Foundation Web site and look under Voter Help Desk, and check "US citzens without residency".