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November 7, 2018
Iowa is one of only two states – alongside Kentucky – to impose permanent disenfranchisement for all people with felony convictions, unless the government approves individual rights restoration. On June 30, 2016, the Iowa Supreme Court upheld the state’s disenfranchisement law in a 4-3 split decision in a case called Griffin v. Pate.
Rights Restoration Process
The only way to regain the right to vote is by applying to the Office of the Governor. Under Iowa’s constitution, the Governor has the discretion to restore voting rights or not. A state-maintained webpage with information regarding Iowa’s rights restoration process can be accessed here.
For the six years between 2005 and 2011, under a policy established through an executive order, Iowa did not permanently disenfranchise its citizens and instead restored voting rights to people who had completed their sentences. In 2011, Gov. Terry Branstad reversed that progress, returning the state to its status as a national outlier on disenfranchisement.
In April 2016, Gov. Branstad announced a simplification to the rights restoration application form. However, the state’s rights restoration process remains one of the most onerous in the country with only 17 applications in 2015.
originally posted by: JAGStorm
Bernie Sanders supports letting jailed felons vote in elections. “In my state, what we do is separate. You’re paying a price, you committed a crime, you’re in jail. That’s bad,” he said. “But you’re still living in American society and you have a right to vote. I believe in that, yes, I do.”
Bernie might be onto something here. If someone did their time, why are they still being punished?
The older I get the more I realize that people are also being imprisoned unjustly. Are they being punished twice?
How crazy is it that we have some of the strictest voting laws in the world. I also think it is weird that all states have different rules regarding voting. I understand states rights, but if we are voting for a president that would affect everyone.