Politics Inslee signs bill restoring voting rights to parolees in Washington state
Georgia voting law explained: Here's what to know about the state's new election rules
Republican lawmakers in Georgia have overhauled the state's elections. Here's a breakdown of what will change under Senate Bill 202.Democrats and civil-rights groups panned the voting bill, and major Georgia-based corporations came out against the bill after it was passed. GOP state lawmakers who backed the bill and other Republicans nationwide harshly criticized the backlash, calling for boycotts of brands like Coca-Cola and Delta Air Lines.
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) signed a bill on Wednesday restoring voting rights to non-incarcerated parolees in the state.
also applies to those convicted of a felony in courts outside of Washington.
The legislation, which goes into effect in January, also requires the state to notify felons of the restoration of voter fights prior to their release from total confinement.
During a on Wednesday, Inslee thanked the sponsor of the bill, state Rep. Tarra Simmons (D), who was incarcerated herself before becoming a lawyer and being elected to the legislature in November.
Why some Democrats are quietly unhappy with the House’s big voting rights bill
There’s a debate over whether some of the For the People Act’s provisions are misconceived.Known as HR 1 in the House, where it passed in early March with only a single Democratic defection, and S 1 in the Senate, where it’s co-sponsored by every Democrat except West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, it’s a bill that Democrats and allied outside advocates argue is urgently necessary to save the country not only from voter suppression, but also from gerrymandering and the malign influences of big and dark money in politics.
"Regaining the right to vote, after having lost so many things, meant more to me than most people could imagine," Simmons . "This might seem a small thing to some people, but it's a giant step for civil rights and it's one that will give others what it gave me: a belief that I mattered, that I was once again a member of society, and that my freedom was worth preserving at all costs."
Washington is the 20th state to restore voting rights to felons upon their release from prison, according to the. The center estimates that the bill will restore voting rights to 20,000 felons.
Its passage comes as GOP-led states move to restrict voting rules after some disappointing results in the 2020 elections, leading to backlash from Democrats, corporate America and voting rights advocates.
Some states work to expand voting rights for people with felony convictions
Amid the push to enact restrictive voting legislation, lawmakers in some states are working to expand voting rights for people with felony convictions. After initially failing in 2020, Gov. Jay Inslee restored voting rights to more than 20,000 people with felony convictions who are out of prison, but still under community supervision.
Bills restricting early or absentee voting have been passed or taken up by states including Georgia and Texas.
Only a few states thus far have moved to expand access to voting, counter to the trend.
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (D) on Wednesday that would establish three days of early voting, place voting centers for more in-person voting options and open a digital portal for voters to register and apply for ballots.
"While other states are restricting the right to vote, I'm glad that Washington, here is expanding our access to democracy," Inslee said Wednesday.
Republican state lawmakers look to pass stricter voting requirements. This is how they would work. .
Despite winning the Electoral College in 2016, Trump couldn’t admit he had actually lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton, instead claiming without evidence that she had received millions of illegal votes. Trump made his baseless election fraud accusations again going into the 2020 election and escalated them after Joe Biden was declared the winner, with Trump and many of his supporters refusing to acknowledge his defeat. The widespread belief among Republicans that the election was illegitimate culminated in a “Stop the Steal” rally headlined by Trump on Jan. 6, the day Congress met to officially certify Biden as the winner of the election.