Constitutional amendment; restoration of civil rights. (HJ628)

Introduced By

Del. Luke Torian (D-Woodbridge) with support from co-patron Del. Sam Rasoul (D-Roanoke)

Progress

Introduced
Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law

Description

Constitutional amendment (first resolution); restoration of civil rights. Provides that no person convicted of a felony shall be qualified to vote unless he has served his full sentence and been released back to civil society. The proposed amendment removes the current constitutional language that provides for restoration of civil rights by the Governor or other appropriate authority. Read the Bill »

Outcome

Bill Has Failed

History

DateAction
01/14/2015Committee
01/14/2015Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/14/15 15101978D
01/14/2015Referred to Committee on Privileges and Elections
01/20/2015Assigned P & E sub: Constitutional Amendments
02/10/2015Left in Privileges and Elections

Comments

ACLU-VA Voting Rights, tracking this bill in Photosynthesis, notes:

The ACLU of Virginia strongly supports legislation to amend the Virginia Constitution to repeal the Commonwealth’s felon disenfranchisement provision. The ACLU strongly supports automatically restoring the rights of all persons convicted of felonies without being conditioned on payment of fines, fees, and restitution. Supporting proposals without conditions does not absolve individuals convicted of felonies from their duties to pay the court or victims. A vast majority of disenfranchised citizens in Virginia are not incarcerated and are tax-paying citizens with jobs and families who are involved in their communities. For the purposes of voting, financial obligations should not prohibit citizens from exercising their constitutional rights. Virginia, one of the worst states in the nation for felon disenfranchisement, has an estimated 450,000, or nearly 7.3 percent, citizens who have permanently lost their constitutional right to vote.