Former Felons in Florida Begin Registering to Vote

Former Felons in Florida Begin Registering to Vote
An elderly African American man holds his “I voted” sticker after he cast his ballot in Washington, DC. - Shutterstock

Ex-felons in Florida had their voting rights restored on Tuesday thanks to the state’s Amendment 4, which was passed in November.

Approximately 1.4 million people are now eligible to vote in future elections in Florida, an important battleground state.

“We are encouraging our members to celebrate,” Desmond Meade, president of Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, which helped register people online and at local election supervisors’ office, told CBS News. “Our members are going into the supervisor of elections with their loved ones. And that is very key— with their loved ones— because we really want to highlight that concept of love.”

During last year’s midterm elections, 65 percent of Florida voters decided that felons who completed their sentences and weren’t convicted of murder or sex offenses would be able to have their voting rights restored.

Over 418,000 Black people, who are most affected by the change, will be able to cast their ballots, per Vox.

An emotional Robert Eckford, who filled out a voter registration form in Orlando, told CBS News that the amendment taking effect means he’ll “be a human being again. I’ll be an American citizen again.”

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