Those with felony convictions will now have their voting rights restored automatically if they've completed their sentences, including parole and probation. While there was already a process in place in Florida for former felons to regain their rights, it was incredibly arduous, required personal approval from the state governor, and had a very low rate of success. The group collected more than 800,000 signatures to qualify Amendment 4 for the 2018 ballot. To see so many people in a room crying, hugging each other and really just celebrating years worth of hard work.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) estimates 1.4 million convicted felons will now have the ability to vote in Florida.
Most Florida felons who have finished their sentences will be able to vote again in future elections. Those people will still be barred from voting unless their rights are restored by the state clemency board, which consists of the governor and the three cabinet officers (attorney general, chief financial officer and commissioner of agriculture and consumer services).
Amendment 13 faced fierce opposition from greyhound breeders and owners and the National Rifle Association's Florida lobbyist, Marion Hammer, who urged members to defeat the measure, saying that a provision could open to the door to ban hunting and fishing.
Andrew Gillum, the Democratic candidate who has conceded in Florida's gubernatorial race, supported the measure while his opponent, Republican Ron DeSantis, opposed it.
Brian Kemp Is Getting Desperate
And he should not get a promotion to a higher position, because he will constantly abuse that power, as well". In a blow to Kemp, a federal judge ruled Friday that Georgia must ease its "exact match" demands.
Scott has said, "If you are a convicted felon part of what you did is you lose your rights and there ought to be a process to get those rights back".
Tallahassee mayor and Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum waves at supporters after casting his ballot with his children on November 6, 2018 in Tallahassee, Fla.
Neil Volz, political director of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, the group behind the measure, said he and Desmond Meade, the group's chair, were watching the returns in a hotel room in Orlando together and broke into tears when it was announced the amendment passed.
Supporters of the amendment said the current system was too strict. The 1.4 million people in the state who have been disenfranchised by that policy represent an estimated 10 percent of Florida's voting population and a quarter of the total disenfranchised population in the United States.