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Naturalization Applications Spike Ahead of Election

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Naturalization Applications Spike Ahead of Election

Law

Naturalization Applications Spike Ahead of Election

Naturalization Applications Spike Ahead of Election

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/18195349/18195675" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

More than a million legal immigrants applied to naturalize last year, a sharp spike driven by fee increases and — for many — a desire to vote in this year's presidential race.

But the immigration agency says it's overwhelmed and can't process the applications until after the vote. That has led to charges that a Republican administration is blocking new voters who are likely to lean Democratic.

Now the head of Citizenship and Immigration Services tells a congressional panel how he plans to speed up processing.