LOS ANGELES (AP) — California voters could decide whether to reinstate voting rights to people in prison on felony convictions under a newly proposed constitutional amendment.
It would be a major expansion of suffrage for incarcerated people if passed. California would join Maine and Vermont, as well as the District of Columbia, as the only states where felons never lose their right to vote, even while they are in prison, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
The California bill, introduced Monday by Assembly Member Isaac Bryan, proposes an amendment to the state constitution. Bryan’s proposal doesn’t include any exemptions based on the crime committed. After decades of disenfranchisement, he said it’s time to open up voting for everyone.