Florida passes amendment to restore felons’ voting rights

Florida voters have approved an amendment restoring voting rights for most felons.

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Under Amendment 4, felons not convicted of sex offenses or murder would automatically have their voting rights restored after completing their sentences or going on probation. The passage affects about 1.5 million people in the state.

Currently, former felons must wait at least 5 years after completing their sentences to ask the Florida Clemency Board, made up by the governor and the Cabinet, to restore their rights, according to the Pensacola News Journal.

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In 2006, Florida Republican Governor Charlie Crist pushed to make it easier for convicted felons to regain voting rights after serving their sentences, but in March 2011, Republican Governor Rick Scott reversed the reforms.

Amendment 4 was placed on the 2018 ballot by a petition of more than 799,000 voters.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.