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California Moves One Step Closer to Granting Parolees Right to Vote
By Antonio Ray Harvey California Black Media
Published July 2, 2020

Assemblymember  Kevin McCarty’s (D-Sacramento) Assembly Constitutional Amendment 6 (ACA 6) passed out of the  California State  Senate last week.

The bill, known as the Free the Vote Act, will  seek  voters’  approval  in the 2020 November election to restore voting rights to former inmates  who are  free from incarceration  but still on parole.

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Currently, in California, a person’s right to vote is suspended when they are  imprisoned  or on parole for a felony conviction,  although they can vote while on probation, county post-release community supervision and federal supervised release.

Only two states, Maine and Vermont, allow people to vote while still  incarcerated.

ACA 6 passed out the Senate with a 28-9 vote.

It’s been a long road for ACA 6 since it first  passed  out of the California Assembly with bipartisan support back in August 2019. About 48,000 people on parole would  become eligible  to vote  should  Californians approve the  amendment.

“ACA 6 passed on the Senate Floor. To get to this day was not easy, and there’s still work to be done,” McCarty said in a Twitter post following the Senate vote. “But I am thrilled that Californians  will have an opportunity to weigh in this November, and use their voice to give voice to others.”

ACA 6 is sponsored by the California Secretary of State Alex Padilla  and jointly authored by  Assemblymembers  Dr. Shirley Weber (D-San Diego), Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego), and Rob  Bonta (D-Oakland).

Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) also co-authored ACA 6.

Assemblymembers  Ash  Kalra  (D-San Jose), Mike Gipson (D-Carson), Kevin Mullin  (D-San Mateo), Mark Stone (D-Monterey Bay), Wendy Carrillo (D-Los Angeles), and Sydney  Kamlager  (D-Los Angeles) sponsored the bill.

Last year, Nevada and Colorado restored voting rights to approximately 87,000 people on parole.

Categories: News | Political
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