Virginia Guv Restores Voting Rights To Over 200,000 Convicted Felons

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe acknowledges guests in the House Chambers at the Virginia State Capitol as he delivered his State of the Commonwealth address in Richmond, Va., Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016. (Bob Brown/Richm... Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe acknowledges guests in the House Chambers at the Virginia State Capitol as he delivered his State of the Commonwealth address in Richmond, Va., Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016. (Bob Brown/Richmond Times-Dispatch via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT MORE LESS
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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — More than 200,000 convicted felons will be eligible to vote and run for public office in Virginia under a sweeping executive order announced Friday by Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe.

McAuliffe said his actions would help undo Virginia’s long history of trying to suppress the black vote.

He said he was certain he had the legal authority for the massive extension of voting rights, adding that he’d consulted with legal and constitutional experts, including Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring.

“Too often in both our distant and recent history, politicians have used their authority to restrict people’s ability to participate in our democracy,” McAuliffe said in a statement. “Today we are reversing that disturbing trend and restoring the rights of more than 200,000 of our fellow Virginians who work, raise families and pay taxes in every corner of our Commonwealth.”

McAuliffe has made the restoration of rights of former convicts a priority of his administration. Before Friday’s order, the administration had restored the rights of more than 18,000 felons, which officials said is more than the past seven governors combined.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Notable Replies

  1. This is a big deal and no comments??

  2. Here’s a comment… That’s no difference between the corporatist, DLC, Third Way, establishment Democrats and Republicans… except in just about every way that truly matters to the lives of average Americans.

  3. Another frabjous day. Calloo! Callay!

  4. Stuck at the bottom of the center column, and not on the livewire.

  5. Thank you so very much Governor McAuliffe for restoring the Voting Rights to those who have paid their debt to our society and its time we welcome them back into the fold.

    What a bold and humane in granting this precious right!

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