After casting their 29 electoral college votes for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton earlier today, the members of the New York Electoral College, including President Bill Clinton and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, made another profound statement in support of immigrant New York. In a unanimous motion put forward by Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and seconded by New York State AFL-CIO President Mario Cilento, the electors voted to forgo their compensation as electoral college voters and donate it instead to the New York Immigration Coalition.
Steve Choi, executive director of New York Immigration Coalition, commented, “Yesterday, thousands of New Yorkers took to the streets to loudly declare that our New York will not give into anti-immigrant hate and that immigrant New York is here to stay. This tremendous show of support from Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, President of the New York State AFL-CIO Mario Cilento, and the rest of the electors is extremely powerful and we are humbled by it. We are eager to continue our work with leaders on a city and state level to protect our important and vulnerable New York immigrant and refugee communities.”
The full text of the motion as introduced by Speaker Heastie and seconded by Mr. Cilento is as follows:
"The electors of this college unanimously agree to forgo their compensation as electeds and have their money designated to an organization which assists the brave men, women and children wanting to make the great United States their home, the New York Immigration Coalition."
In a statement to the NYIC, NYS AFL-CIO President Mario Cilento said, "I was honored to stand in support of this motion. I am hopeful that in some small way this will help draw attention to the important work being done by the New York Immigration Coalition. Immigrant New Yorkers now more than ever need and deserve our support."
Watch the introduction of the motion and the subsequent vote here.
The New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC) is an umbrella policy and advocacy organization for nearly 200 groups in New York State that work with immigrants and refugees. The NYIC aims to achieve a fairer and more just society that values the contributions of immigrants and extends opportunity to all by promoting immigrants’ full civic participation, fostering their leadership, and providing a unified voice and a vehicle for collective action for New York’s diverse immigrant communities.