By Catherine Rampell

The Washington Post

May 14, 2020

Monique Akinpelu, like so many others hoping to vote this November, was this close to the finish line.

A nursing assistant on the pandemic’s front lines in Atlanta, she has lived (and worked, and paid taxes), always legally, in the United States for 15 years. A decade ago, she began the long process of applying for citizenship.

She assembled paperwork and got a top-flight immigration lawyer. She answered civics questions about the Federalist Papers. She completed her final interview last July. She was congratulated, fingerprinted and told she’d soon be scheduled to publicly swear an oath of allegiance to the United States.

“When they told me that, I sat and cried,” Akinpelu said.

The ceremony was scheduled for March 20. But when she showed up at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office, a security guard turned her away.

Read more

Skip to content