At this point, those against at least some reforms towards more felon voting rights are ignoring the basic historical facts about the origins of the legislation in America. On top of this, by making felon voting illegal they are saying they want a government policy that sends a message that even a lifetime of attempted redemption and good deeds can’t erase a past error, even a small one. The truth is that felons have as much right as any other citizen to cast votes. Denying them this right is discrimination of the first order. The good news, however, is that, while some states are rolling back voting rights across the nation mostly to show support for Trump’s big lie, many others states are working to expand felon voting rights. Quinn Scanlan had this article in NBC News. Here is an excerpt:
The sweeping, nationwide effort to enact legislation with restrictive voting provisions has overshadowed an even greater endeavor to do the opposite. While lawmakers in 47 states have introduced 361 restrictive voting bills as of the end of March, proposed bills expanding voting outnumber that figure by more than twofold, according to the nonpartisan Brennan Center for Justice.
In several states, these expansive bills tackle felony disenfranchisement, which, according to the Brennan Center, disproportionately impacts Black Americans.
“The movement that we’re seeing this year is fantastic. It’s also a part of a trend that’s been going on for a number of years now,” said Sean Morales-Doyle, the deputy director of the Voting Rights and Elections Program at the New York-based think tank. “We still have a long way to go, but the fact that we’re seeing all this movement … helps me think that maybe we will get where we need to go soon.”
Continue reading here. 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.