Presidential Race Spurs Illinois Immigrants to Apply For Citizenship
Applications by immigrants living in Illinois who want to become citizens are on the rise, and the presidential race may be playing a role.
The federal government has seen a twenty five percent increase in citizenship applications from Illinois compared with other years, says Breandán McGee with the Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights.
McGee says he thinks Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's remarks about Mexicans and building a wall on the U.S. Mexico border are a large factor since most immigrants in the state are Latino.
"You've got the candidate in the Republican Party who's basically, you know, called many people coming from Mexico 'rapists,'" he says.
Also among the top issues is the vacancy on the US Supreme Court.
"Many immigrants are seeing this election as being one of the most significant in their lifetimes because, obviously, if the Senate does not basically appoint a 9th Supreme Court justice in this term, the next president will do so,” McGee said.
The naturalization process in Illinois typically takes four to six months.