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10.01.2019 17:28 News >> Us: Florida Ex-Felons Get Back Their Right To Vote

Us: Florida Ex-Felons Get Back Their Right To Vote

History says change in law in Sunshine State has potential to sway future presidential elections.

In the U.S. state of Florida, a law is taking effect this week restoring the voting rights of nearly 1.5 million ex-felons.

People with past felony convictions in Florida are now eligible to vote in elections, a milestone in the state's history, under a constitutional amendment that passed last November.

The measure excludes people convicted of murder and sex crimes.

Whether the influx of newly enfranchised voters will sway close races depends on whether they show up at the polls. The Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, a group that championed the initiative, has already started coordinating a voter education campaign.

With its 29 electoral votes, the Sunshine State has played a pivotal role in a number of elections, including the 2016 presidential race -- which Donald Trump narrowly won in Florida -- and the infamous "hanging chad" botched race between George Bush and Al Gore in 2000.

In the latter, a Supreme Court decision ended the Florida recount, giving the presidency to Bush.

Critics of the disenfranchisement law pointed to its disproportionate impact on minority communities, calling it racist. -



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