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Wash. Senate OKs bill to restore voting for felons

Wed., April 15, 2009, 12:38 p.m.

OLYMPIA — The Senate has approved a bill that would let tens of thousands of felons get their voting rights back sooner.

The measure passed the Senate on a 29-19 vote Wednesday. Because of changes made in the Senate, it now heads back to the House, which passed the bill last month.

Under current law, felons can’t vote until they have served their sentences, including the completion of any parole or probation, and paid all restitution and other court fees.

Under the measure that passed Wednesday, felons could re-register to vote once they’re no longer in state custody, including any parole or probation.

However, under an amendment the Senate passed, those rights could be revoked if a felon fails to make payments on their financial obligations.

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