Everyone should have the right to vote. Vote YES on Amendment 4
The Miami Beach Democratic Club voted unanimously on Monday to endorse a YES vote on Amendment 4, the citizen initiative to restore voting rights to felons who have served their sentence.
Under the initiative, these men and women (except those convicted of murder or a felony sexual offense) would automatically regain their citizenship rights. Florida is one of four states in the country where this does not happen. Upwards of 1.6 million people in the state, more than 10% of the voting-age population, are disenfranchised as a result.
Under the current Republican administration, convicted felons who have completed their sentences are still asked to wait between five and seven years before they can request that a state board consider the restitution of their rights. The governor and Cabinet have sole authority to determine whether a petitioner’s voting rights are restored.
“Our unanimous vote to endorse Amendment 4 shows that we as a club, and as Democrats, value fairness, justice, and second chances,” said club president Dan Royles. “That’s why we’re working toward a more just Florida and a more just America, starting right here in Miami Beach.”
Last February, U.S. District Court Judge Mark Walker ruled that Florida was unconstitutionally restricting the rights of former felons, calling the system “fatally flawed.” The state’s Republican governor then successfully appealed the ruling to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, and that “fatally flawed” system was put back in place.
The Miami Beach Democratic Club believes that individuals who have paid their debt to society should have the same rights that the rest of us enjoy.
Vote YES on Amendment 4.