Nancy Pelosi and House Dems Introduce Bill That Would Immediately Restore Voting Rights to Convicted Felons Nationwide

by Andrew Kerr


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats unveiled a bill Friday that would immediately restore voting rights to convicted felons nationwide.

Convicted felons who have completed their prison sentences would have their voting rights restored, but those incarcerated at the time of an election would still be barred from voting.
The bill would also mandate automatic voter registration nationwide.

House Democrats unveiled details of a sweeping federal elections reform package Friday that, if enacted, would immediately restore voting rights to convicted felons who have completed their prison sentences nationwide.

The bill, titled the “For the People Act,” would also mandate automatic voter registration nationwide for eligible voters that provide information to state government agencies such as the DMV.

The act “makes automatic voter registration a mandate nationwide — not just in certain states or in certain counties — but nationwide,” Democratic Rep. John Lewis of Georgia said at a press conference announcing the bill Friday. “We must get there, and we will get there, as Democrats.”

“It restores voting rights to felons who paid their debt to society,” Lewis added.

The bill, also known as House Resolution 1, or H.R. 1, includes dozens of measures from House Democrats including election security, campaign finance and anti-corruption reforms. The package was introduced Thursday by Democratic Rep. John Sarbanes of Maryland and co-sponsored by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

It also includes a measure that would require sitting presidents and vice presidents, in addition to presidential and vice presidential candidates, to release 10 years of personal tax returns.

The bill will “strengthen our democracy and return political power to the people by making it easier, not harder, to vote, ending the dominance of big money in our politics and ensuring that public officials actually serve the public,” Sarbanes said Thursday.

The bill holds that “the right of an individual who is a citizen of the United States to vote in any election for Federal office shall not be denied or abridged because that individual has been convicted of a criminal offense.”

Convicted felons who have served their sentence or are sentenced to serve “only a term of probation” would have their voting rights restored, but those incarcerated at the time of an election would be barred from voting.

Convicted felons would be able to vote “in any election for Federal office held after the date of the enactment of this Act,” were it to be signed into law.

The proposal was welcomed with open arms by the left-leaning Brennan Center for Justice, a law policy institute that focuses on voting rights and campaign finance reform.

“The Brennan Center for Justice fully supports voting rights restoration for formerly incarcerated people who have past felony convictions,” Brennan Center spokesperson Alexandra Ringe told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

The proposal comes less than two months after Florida voters elected to restore voting rights to nearly 1.5 million convicted felons.

Pelosi committed to pushing the entire reform package through the House during a press conference Friday.

“We are introducing H.R. 1 to … clean up corruption and restore integrity to government,” she said. “We put power back into the hands of the people.”

“[W]e will have the complete H.R. 1 passed by the House of Representatives with the knowledge, transparency that the American people will know that this is an option that the House has given the Senate of the United States and the President of the United States to take action in support of the American people,” Pelosi said.

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Andrew Kerr is a reporter for the Daily Caller News Foundation. Follow Andrew on Twitter.
Photo “House Democrats” by Nancy Pelosi. 













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10 Thoughts to “Nancy Pelosi and House Dems Introduce Bill That Would Immediately Restore Voting Rights to Convicted Felons Nationwide”

  1. […] House Democrats — most notably John Lewis — unveiled the “For The People Act,” a bill designed to immediately restore voting rights to all convicted felons in the U.S. who have completed their […]

  2. Mary

    She is trying to make sure all the illegal aliens can vote in every election! This needs to be defeated.

  3. Sharon Hess

    I have never seen such nasty political crap and people putting up with it come 2020 if we survive the pre-planned invasion of America and the truth be told America will be so torn apart what good is it to be President The crooked are hard at work

  4. TAP

    I wish she’d quit thinking that she speaks for all of America. She wouldn’t condescend speaking to us much less speaking for us. Shut her the hell up!

  5. Mark Scully

    The ONLY reason she wants automatic voter registration,is so they can steal votes from people who don’t vote.i hope the same Senate and the President but the squash on this.

  6. Karen Lawrence

    Nancy Pelosi don’t try to fool the citizens and registered voters!!! In most States and the nation felons who have finished their sentence will have their right to vote restored. Your bill will only effect a couple of states.

  7. TMB

    Pelosi is a criminal so it stands to reason anything she pushes or is associated with will be of a criminal nature

    1. carol

      amen, TMB, well said

    2. RICK

      That damned Trump and his wall. I got 210 keys of blow i need to get through. It s looking like I will have to bring it in through a port of entry.

  8. Nancy Alleshouse

    How about making tax details available for all the people in office, going back the last ten years? Esp all the Congress and Senators as well as Presidents and Vice Presidents? Should be very interesting.