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Breaking down Florida Amendment 1: Citizenship Requirement to Vote

On your ballot, you’ll find six constitutional amendments that can be complicated and confusing.

So, we’re beginning a series called “Amendments 101” to provide a simple, clear breakdown of each question — and to ultimately help you make an informed decision.

This and all constitutional amendments need a supermajority 60% support to pass.

Amendment 1: Click here for the full text.

Amendment 1 appears to address a question about who is eligible to vote in Florida.

But the real question boils down to a switch in words.

The amendment would simply change two words of language already in the Florida Constitution:

“Every citizen of the United States who is 18 years old or older can vote in Florida” would become “Only a citizen of the United States who is 18 years old or older can vote in Florida.”

“Every” would change to “Only a...”.

What’s the difference? What would that actually change? The practical answer is ... nothing.

The organization that worked to get Amendment 1 on the 2020 ballot is the Political Action Committee “Florida Citizen Voters,” whose principals have explained that they want to ensure non-citizens don’t ever vote in Florida.

But Florida law already ensures that.

Opponents of Amendment 1 describe the PAC’s effort as political baiting.

State data analysts confirm the word change in Amendment 1 will change nothing; and it will cost the public nothing. But it did cost more than $8 million in unidentifiable political donations for the petition gathering process that put it on the ballot.

A “Yes” vote = a word change in the Constitution with no practical effect.

A “No” vote = changes nothing.


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