Disenfranchisement Bill Passes PA House

by TChris

A NY Times editorial explains why the Pennsylvania House passed a bill that would prevent individuals on probation or parole from voting.

The Pennsylvania bill represents an odious attempt by lawmakers to undo a state court ruling overturning a law that required newly released prisoners to wait five years before getting the right to vote. Republican lawmakers who disliked the court ruling liked it even less when community activists in Democratic parts of the state began to inform ex-felons that they now had the right to return to the polls.

Voting is a right of citizenship. Voting fosters rehabilitation by allowing ex-offenders to feel a connection to others, to be woven into the social fabric. The counterproductive and undemocratic bill is likely to die in the Pennsylvania Senate, but the Times is right to label this attempt to suppress voting rights as "shameful" and "reprehensible."

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  • Re: Disenfranchisement Bill Passes PA House (none / 0) (#1)
    by scarshapedstar on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:47 PM EST
    It's a good thing we know these Republicans love freedom, otherwise we might think they're scum.

    Re: Disenfranchisement Bill Passes PA House (none / 0) (#2)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:03:48 PM EST
    The judiciary is pretty retributivist, but legislatures are completely so. It's all about revenge. Don't do the crime if you can't do the time (even if the time is grossly disproportionate to the crime).