Advertise Here

Spin Control

9th Circuit reverses felon voting order

OLYMPIA— Inmates in Washington state prisons don’t have a constitutional right to vote in elections, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today.

Washington doesn’t allow felons to vote unless they have their rights restored, and attorneys argued that’s discriminatory against minorities, whose percentage of the prison population is greater than the population in general.

A federal trial court agreed there is discrimination in the state’s criminal justice system.

But the federal appeals court said today that’s not a violation of the Voting Rights Act. There’s no evidence that the law requiring felons to get their rights back before voting was enacted with the goal of disenfranchising minorities.

In fact, laws in Washington denying the vote to felons go back to 1866, while the Voting Rights Act was passed in 1965.

Please keep it civil. Don't post comments that are obscene, defamatory, threatening, off-topic, an infringement of copyright or an invasion of privacy. Read our forum standards and community guidelines.

You must be logged in to post comments. Please log in here or click the comment box below for options.

comments powered by Disqus
« Back to Spin Control

Get blog updates by email

About this blog

Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Nick Deshais covers Spokane City Hall for The Spokesman-Review.

Latest comments »

Read all the posts from recent conversations on Spin Control.

Search this blog
Subscribe to this blog
Advertise Here