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Assembly Bill to Disenfranchise Coalinga Patients


Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula (Democrat, Fresno) has introduced a bill (AB 2839) that would disenfranchise patients at Coalinga State Hospital, including patients that recently defeated a proposed tax increase attempted by the City of Coalinga.  The district represented by Assemblyman Arambula includes both Coalinga State Hospital as well as the City of Coalinga. 

The proposed bill, if passed, would require anyone adjudicated as a “sexually violent predator” (SVP) and committed to the custody of the State Department of Hospitals for “an indeterminate term” to vote at their “last known address.”  Because individuals who are adjudicated as SVP’s were imprisoned prior to their adjudication, these individuals would be required to vote at the prison where they previously resided.

“Most individuals adjudicated as SVP’s have little or no chance to be released from Coalinga State Hospital,” stated ACSOL Executive Director Janice Bellucci.  “Therefore, they should be allowed to continue to vote where they actually live which is in the City of Coalinga.”

Following their unsuccessful attempt to increase taxes, the City of Coalinga sued Fresno County in an attempt to negate the votes cast in that election by patients at Coalinga State Hospital.  A motion to intervene in the case has been filed by a group of Coalinga patients and a hearing on that motion will be heard on March 7.


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  1. Q

    Seems to me this could be beat on constitutional grounds should this bill ever come into effect; maybe not in California though. I’m a-political, yet it never ceases to amaze me how these democrats and liberals disregard our constitution and the law when they din’t like it or it get’s in their way, then willingly attack it (verbally or otherwise) to try to get their way.

    • The Static-99R Is A Scam

      It’s not only Democrats, but also Republicans. The City of Coalinga council is mostly Republican.

      • Q

        @The Static-99R Is A Scam; This is true what you say. I just named that one party because it is a member of that particular party that is leading the charge to disenfranchise these American citizens.

        • David Kennerly, A Risk To Whom?

          It is delusional to suggest that it is Democrats who are leading the charge to disenfranchise sex offenders. I won’t carry water for either party as I have stated numerous times on this forum, but it is factually untrue that Democrats are more likely to further marginalize “sex offenders,” in general, or to disenfranchise them vis-a-vis voting rights, in particular than Republicans. This distinction clearly goes to Republicans. In this case, we have a Democrat legislator from a particularly conservative rural county who colluded with Republicans from his district to disenfranchise civil detainees. As far as threats to voting rights go, the Repuiblicans are far-and-away the greatest threat to many communities’ – not just sex offenders’ – right to vote.

          Personally, I find it tiresome that many here cling to this notion that either major political party is our friend in any way. I know that political party affinities are hard to break and that most people crave belonging to one of the two execrable teams, even in the face of obvious demonstrations of their limitless hostility to us as Registrants, but it’s time to survey the field of political machines with clear-eyed realism and to shed our irrational affections for those who wish us nothing but harm. Our only organized political friends are self-identified libertarians. We have only to see the array of libertarians who decry the present state of sex offender hysteria to know that to be true. Those who guard liberty jealously and without compromise are those who will not compromise on our liberty, either.

        • The Static-99R Is A Scam

          Ah, gotcha. Makes sense.

  2. AJ

    Wow. Simply wow. So much for being “free citizens.” So if/when they are required to vote where they “live”, will they be required to register an address there too?

    Were I the CSH hospatients, I would let my voter registration expire, then sign up again. What utility bill, DL, or other ID will they have showing the supposed residence outside CSH? None. Good luck making that work, Legislature.

    This stinks of corruption like nobody’s business. Also, the courts look very intensely at laws affecting voting. It has a distinct odor of a Bill of Attainder.

    • Chris F


      It is by any definition a “Bill of Attainder” and passes every test of it with ease.

      If the city is so negatively impacted by them, how about actually treating and releasing many of them?

      • totally against public registry

        I agree with you. Except that the city is getting so much revenue from the hospital and the prison next door. I read that those “free” citizens are charged $250K to the state each year every year they are incarcerated in the hospital. That is the main reason why they are not released.

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