Giving Ex-Prisoners Voting Rights - WSET.com - ABC13

Giving Ex-Prisoners Voting Rights

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Lynchburg, VA - Virginia is one of only four states that doesn't give felons their voting rights back once they've left prison. But, the group Churches United for Service is taking action to change that.

Tuesday, they held a rally in Lynchburg to mobilize people. They say, 350,000 free Virginians, people who pay taxes, can not vote because they served time at some point in their lives.

The goal is to get Governor McDonnell to issue an executive order allowing those who paid their debt to society to vote in elections.

One former prisoner spoke from first-hand experience.

"It felt good to be a part of this American society. It felt good to be a citizen, but I was a citizen that couldn't vote," said Eric Penn, advocate for voting rights.

The group is planning to go to Richmond May 31st to speak to the Governor and General Assembly. Kentucky, Florida and Iowa also have this law.

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