Amendment 4 in FL means increased voter rights
Truth Out, by William Rivers Pitts
Nov 7, 2018
About 1.6 million people with felony convictions in Florida just got the vote back, thanks to the passage of Constitutional Amendment 4. Those convicted of murder and sexually-related offenses are excluded, but the rest will see their rights restored after completing their prison sentence.
Truthout reporter Mike Ludwig covered the issue today:
Of all the efforts to combat voter suppression and gerrymandering appearing on statewide ballots this year, Florida’s Amendment 4 has perhaps received the most attention. That’s because the initiative would automatically restore voting rights for an estimated 1.6 million people. Nationwide, 6.1 million people have lost their right to vote due to a prior felony conviction — including 1 out of 13 would-be Black voters, according to the Sentencing Project.
Florida accounts for roughly 25 percent of those who have lost their right to vote due to felony convictions. Rules in Florida and 11 other states make it extremely difficult to get voting rights restored, even after serving a sentence and probation or parole. If approved, Amendment 4 would automatically restore voting rights for people with prior felony convictions upon completion of their sentences, except those convicted of murder or a felony sexual offense.
A significant victory for social justice that strikes a blow against the molecular-level racism of the penal system. More voters is always a good thing. Always.
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