Voting rights are something virtually every Republican wants to take away from the people of this nation. We have seen this magnified since the election of Barack Obama, but it goes back much longer than that. Republican voter suppression started in 1980 when the founder of ALEC convinced the Republican party that the less people vote, the more they will win.
Kentucky Democrat, Governor Steve Beshear, took a bold step in foiling Republican suppression efforts in a big way. With one executive order, he restored voting rights to 140k non-violent ex-felons.
In total, it is estimated that Beshear’s E.O. will restore voting rights to upwards of 180k Kentuckians over the next few years. The 140k will be more or less an instant restoration.
I’ve signed an EO that automatically restores the right to vote & hold public office to certain offenders who’ve served out their sentences
— Steve Beshear (@GovSteveBeshear) November 24, 2015
Republicans have whipped up mass hysteria over the theory of voter fraud. It has not yet been proven to be any kind of problem, except for the Republicans who have been caught trying to throw out voter registration forms or rig election machines.
Real provable voter fraud essentially does not exist and is just a smoke screen by Republicans to suppress your voting rights. The majority of cases that can be called “fraud” are from people who are simply confused about eligibility when using absentee ballots.
The Brennan Center for Justice has called Governor Beshear’s move “an incredible breakthrough in the movement to end criminal disenfranchisement policies nationwide.”
It is important to remember the racial disparity in this as well. A majority of ex-felons are people of color due to mass incarceration policies for non-violent crimes. Not only does this move restore fundamental rights to citizens that have paid their debt to society, but it helps tremendously in enabling a greater voice for minorities that have been historically under-represented in governance.
Featured image via Wikicommons