Democrat State To Give Prisoners Voting Rights?

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( – On Friday, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) signed a bill that would set up the first-of-its-kind voting program in county jails. This could allow those in local custody to vote in elections. 

The law is going to require the counties to have a designated employee that will handle voting access for everyone who is in custody. As part of the provision, there would need to also be at least one day for in-person voting allowed. 

In Colorado those who have been convicted of felonies are not eligible to vote, however, those who are still awaiting trial or have only been convicted of a misdemeanor have the right to vote. 

For November’s election, there are going to be at least 61 voting sites across the county’s facilities according to a statement by the Secretary of State. 

The bill was sponsored by State Sen. Julie Gonzales (D), who told NBC News that the initiative was meant to provide a solution to previous logistical challenges that had previously kept inmates from being able to vote. In her statement, she argued that in Colorado they prided themselves on their election system, and still, they had realized that the ballot was not fully accessible to a group of individuals. 

Currently, only eight jails across the nation allow inmates to have easy access to ballots, two of which are located in Denver. In 2020 the Denver program was initiated with over 150 inmates voting during that election. 

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