A partisan firestorm erupted in the waning days of this year’s legislative session after Republicans tacked onto the elections package provisions aimed at implementing the voter-approved constitutional amendment that restores the voting rights of felons who have completed their sentences.
Who gets to vote should be driven by citizenship, the spirit of the United States Constitution and all America stands for, not by blowhardism and dirty tricks, argues Nancy Smith.
The House’s party-line, 71-45 vote drew a rebuke from backers of the amendment, who called the bill “a failure to live up to the bipartisan commitment” demonstrated by the 61 percent of voters who approved Amendment 4.
Petition-gatherers to be registered with the state, ballots would have to include information about contributions raised by amendment sponsors, whether out-of-state petition circulators were used and whether amendments could lead to tax increases.
The House Judiciary Committee Palm Coast’s Paul Renner chairs on Tuesday passed a crime bill that eases some punishments and makes it easier for felons to reintegrate society but also passed a restrictive interpretation of Amendment 4 and felons’ right to vote.
Paul Renner, Flagler’s GOP representative and future Speaker of the House, is being dishonest and disingenuous in his defense of a bill that would make felons’ right to vote dependent on paying back all financial obligations.
House proposals would broaden the definition of sex offenses that would keep a felon from regaining the right to vote and would add a slew of financial obligations before a felon could get the right back.
The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a Florida law requiring voters’ signatures on mail-in ballots to match the signatures on file with elections officials imposes “a serious burden on the right to vote.”
Elections officials could face a Herculean task trying to verify whether people who’ve registered to vote have met all the conditions required to make them eligible to cast ballots.
A new constitutional amendment grants “automatic” restoration of voting rights to felons who’ve completed their sentence, but it excludes people “convicted of murder or a felony sexual offense.”