ibusinesslines.com
ibusinesslines.com December 17, 2018


Jewish Groups Helped Florida Felons Gain The Vote

07 November 2018, 02:57 | Erica Roy

Supporters of Amendment 4 celebrate its passage at an election night watch party in Orlando Florida / CJ Ciaramella Reason

Supporters of Amendment 4 celebrate its passage at an election night watch party in Orlando Florida / CJ Ciaramella  Reason

Those who committed sexual offenses or murder are excluded from having their ability to vote restored.

Florida voters approved Amendment 4 on Tuesday night in the 2018 midterm elections, restoring voting rights to more than 1 million people in the state who were previously convicted of felonies.

"'Kol hakavod' to the Reform Jewish communities in Florida - and across the US - who organized and mobilized to make this happen", the national Religious Action Center said on Twitter, using the Hebrew term for "well done".

Florida was among a minority of states that required additional waiting time or extra steps for felons to regain their voting rights.

Scott has said, "If you are a convicted felon part of what you did is you lose your rights and there ought to be a process to get those rights back".

"If we want people returning to society to be productive, law abiding citizens, we need to treat them like full-fledged citizens", Freedom Partners Chairman Mark Holden wrote in his endorsement.

Throughout the campaign, the ballot measure gained star-studded support from the likes of "Orange Is The New Black" author Piper Chapman, John Legend, Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream, NFL stars like Warrick Dunn and even the Koch-backed Freedom Partners.


Per usual, the key races in Florida are nail biters. They also argued that such laws disproportionately impact African Americans.

In the first statewide referendum on transgender rights, MA voters on Tuesday beat back a repeal attempt and reaffirmed a 2016 law extending nondiscrimination protections to transgender people, including their use of public bathrooms and locker rooms.

When Gov. Rick Scott took office in 2011, he and the Cabinet reversed years of progress - imposing a minimum five-year wait on anyone seeking clemency and requiring them to submit to an arduous, often futile process.

Before Tuesday, the only way a person with a prior felony conviction could vote was through the state's clemency system, spearheaded by the governor. Scott only restored rights to 10 percent of felons who applied for re-enfranchisement; as of October first, there was a backlog of more than 10,000 pending applications.

Essentially, based on research at Ballotpedia.org, which cites both supporters and opposition of the amendment, Florida Amendment 3 is created to take the legislation of gambling out of hands of legislators and put it into the hands of the citizens.

"Today, when democratic values are on the defensive worldwide", he said, "Florida voters made a resoundingly clear statement that the state's shameful lifetime ban on voting is not consistent with the values of democracy".



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