Gov. Ned Lamont (D) signed the new Connecticut state budget into law on Wednesday, including a provision restoring the right to vote to citizens on parole. Senate Bill 1202, the bill implementing the state budget, revises a previous statute that requires those convicted of felonies to finish their parole before they are once again allowed to vote. Now, those convicted of felonies in Connecticut will have their voting rights restored as soon as they are released from confinement.
Connecticut was the last state to distinguish between parole and probation when determining when to restore voting rights, a decision that voting rights and criminal justice advocates had been pushing to change for years. The old law caused significant confusion for voters, as those on probation had their voting rights restored but those on parole did not. S.B. 1202 restores the voting rights of over 4,000 Connecticut residents.
You can also see more on this subject at either the Democracy Chronicles felon voting archive or African-American Voting Rights. Also, see our main section on American Democracy and our Voter Access articles focusing more broadly on the ease of voting and the various barriers in the way.