One of the reasons I chose this Bill, is because voting rights is something I've been paying more attention to. Minorities are more likely to end up in prison, and even if certain groups of people make up more of a society, their voices are silenced by rejecting their votes if they are a felon. This reminds me about the 3/5 law, where states that allowed slavery wanted to utilize the slave body count to make their own white voices louder, while not allowing slaves any representation at all. Instead of Slaves, we now use mass incarceration of minorities for petty crimes and drug use to make them felons and take away their vote, while elevating the voices of the elite.
This project thought me more than just the substance of the bill, it has taught me to slow down. While exhausted from a full day's work and finishing school assignments, I opened the windows for what I thought was the assignment, so that it would be ready for me to tackle the next day. I failed to notice that I opened the wrong windows and proceeded to tear out my hair looking for information that simply did not exist.
I spent three days on an assignment that should have taken me only a couple hours to finish, this cost me precious time I could have used to get ahead on other assignments and a final paper for a different class. I finally was ready to give up, when I decided to start over. I closed all the windows, I went back page by page and analyzed everything again, and finally found my mistake. I quickly finished the assignment and turned it in on time, but the frustration I felt will not be forgotten. I have never been one to pay attention to details, but this class has been full of small details that has forced me to take a lot more time to go through directions to make sure nothing is missed.
Another word clarified is “parole”; those convicted of a felony and sentenced to being on parole cannot vote while on parole, even if they are not in prison. The third word being defined is “conviction” to not include juvenile adjudication, a minor convicted of a crime is adjudicated, not convicted. Other requirements to register to vote in the State of California are: you must be a United States Citizen, you must be 18 for the next cycle to vote, and as discussed above; a non-felon or not on parole resident of California.
These changes will be included on printed literature for voter registration to encourage more eligible voters to register to vote. With this clarification, individuals that are not eligible under these circumstances will be removed from voter registrations.
This was first read in Assembly under Chair Shirley Weber. The Assembly committee was the committee on Elections and Redistricting (E. & R.), this committee focuses on encouraging more voter turn-out and how district boundaries are divided out.
This bill passed the third reading on 5/31/16 with 41 ayes, and 37 noes, and on 8/16/16, it passed the third Senate reading with 23 ayes, and 13 noes. It was approved by Governor Brown on 9/28/16.
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